Deaths | February 15, 2013 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Community Pulse - February 15, 2013


Harry Press

Given his last name, perhaps it was no surprise that Harry Press was a lifelong journalist. That life ended on Feb. 6, in Palo Alto, at the age of 93.

He was a newspaperman in Anaheim, Palo Alto and, for the majority of time in San Francisco, working for the Anaheim Bulletin, Palo Alto News, San Francisco News, and finally the San Francisco Call-Bulletin. In 1966 he left his city editor position to return to his alma mater, Stanford University, where he worked until 1989, as both editor of the Stanford Observer, and managing director of the Knight Journalism Fellowships Program.

While a student at Stanford (class of 1939) he worked on the Stanford Daily and also played clarinet in the Stanford Band. He met his wife, Martha (also a college journalist) when they both served in the United States Army during World War II.

Harry and Martha were married in 1944 and had three children, Lindi Press, Tina Press and Tony Press. Martha died in 1999, and Lindi died just five weeks before her father, on Dec. 31, 2012. In March 2001, Press married Mildred Hamilton (herself a retired San Francisco journalist), and they enjoyed almost 10 years together before her death in December 2010.

He lived in the Southgate neighborhood of Palo Alto for 46 years in a house he loved. Soon after a serious fall exactly a year to the day of his death, he moved into The Birches Residential Care Home in Midtown, where he was grateful to receive care for the last year of his life.

He was known for his love of all-things Stanford, especially the baseball team, and for his ambidextrous tennis skills.

He is survived by two of his children, daughter Tina, of Fayetteville, N.Y., and Tony, of Brisbane, Calif.; four grandchildren, Jessica, Patience, Katie and Andy; and four great-grandchildren, Keith, Clark, Finn and Georgia.

Contributions in his honor can be sent to the Friends of the Stanford Daily — Harry Press Scholarship, and mailed to the Stanford Daily, 456 Panama Mall, Stanford, CA 94305.

A celebration of his life will be held at Sunken Diamond, probably in May.

Leah McDonough

Dr. Leah McDonough died Jan. 16 in Redwood City of complications from Alzheimer's.

Born and raised in New York City, she and her husband Joseph McDonough had lived in Palo Alto since 1962. She was preceded in death by her husband of 61 years in 2010. They had known each other since they were 3 years old.

She attended the College of New Rochelle (CNR), received a master's degree at Fordham University, and earned her doctorate in psychology at Michigan State University. CNR awarded her a scholarship during the Great Depression, allowing her to pursue a career in psychology.

A clinical psychologist, she worked for San Mateo County for more than two decades. For 12 years, she directed the forensic unit of San Mateo County's Mental Health Division. Her psychology research was published in numerous articles and book chapters. After retiring from the County, she took up writing essays and short stories, publishing locally and nationally. She enjoyed babysitting for her granddaughter Carrie. She and her husband traveled extensively, and loved to take Carrie along with them.

She is survived by her daughter, Susan McDonough (Warren Mar); and her granddaughter, Caroline Mar (Sandy Metivier).


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