Corinthian Nutter,

97, a black teacher who helped desegregate schools in Merriam, Kan., years before the historic Brown vs. Board of Education ruling, died Wednesday in Shawnee, Kan..


She was the only certified teacher at Walker Elementary, Merriam's school for black children in the late 1940s. The building was old, lacked indoor plumbing, and students used books and supplies discarded by other schools.

When the school district constructed a new building for white children nearby, Merriam's black community rallied to form a chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and sued the district in 1948. Nearly all the families with children at Walker pulled them from class, and Ms. Nutter joined the walkout and taught students in private homes.


Later, she became a key witness in the lawsuit, testifying about conditions at her school. Along with another teacher, she continued to teach her students until the Kansas Supreme Court ruled in their favor in 1949. More court challenges to desegregation followed, culminating in the landmark Brown decision in 1954.

Dr. Robert Bruce,

87, the University of Washington cardiologist who developed the treadmill test used worldwide to diagnose heart disease, died Thursday after a bout with leukemia and spinal stenosis, his family said.

The test he developed in the early 1960s is called the Bruce Protocol. The test can reveal problems hidden when the heart is at rest.

In many cases, the test allows doctors to rule out heart disease, helping avoid unnecessary, expensive and invasive procedures, said Dr. Richard Page, head of the UW Division of Cardiology.

Dr. Bruce's first studies, published in 1949, analyzed the minute-to-minute changes in respiratory and circulatory function of normal adults who took a single-stage treadmill test.

He wrote that the test could detect signs of angina pectoris, chest pain due to coronary artery disease; a previous heart attack; and ventricular aneurysm, a bulging in the heart's ventricle.

Today Dr. Bruce's test has been modified by newer technology, including the use of ultrasounds and radioactive materials to present more accurate pictures of the heart.


Ward Jackson,

75, an abstract painter and a longtime archivist at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, died Feb. 3 in Manhattan of congestive heart disease.

Inspired by painters such as Piet Mondrian and Josef Albers, he made austere, hard-edged geometric compositions, typically on diamond-shaped canvases.

He first exhibited professionally in 1949, as a 21-year-old college student, and was invited by the painter and art critic George L.K. Morris to contribute to the American Abstract Artists annual exhibition.

He was later included in historical surveys of American abstract painting.