- Published: April 18, 2013
Clunie Bryan Gregor, educator, scientist and tempered hedonist died peacefully in his sleep on April 9 at the Friends Care Nursing Home in Yellow Springs.
Born March 5, 1929 in Edinburgh, Scotland, Bryan spent his early childhood on what was, even then, an anachronistic agricultural estate. He attended Peter House College in England and, after graduating in 1951, had what he considered to be his “wilderness years:” a series of odd jobs would take him from Iraq, to Egypt, to Lebanon and back to England, where he completed his Master of Arts degree in 1954.
In 1955, Bryan married Suzanne Assir of Beirut, Lebanon. He taught at the American University of Beirut from 1958 to 1964 before moving to the Netherlands to attend the doctoral program at the University of Utrecht. In 1966, he returned to Beirut, and was chair of the AUB geology department until 1968.
In 1969, Bryan immigrated to the United States and married Anna Bramanti of Florence, Italy. He taught briefly at Case University in Cleveland, and then the West Georgia College of Carrollton, Ga. In 1972, he was offered a tenured position at the recently founded Wright State University. Despite tenure and a significant increase from his previous salary, he nearly turned down the job, but reconsidered upon discovering the village of Yellow Springs. Bryan found his home on West North College Street when he was house-hunting in the village, and stopped to ask directions from a man working in his yard. The man said if he waited a year, Bryan could buy his house, and the Gregor family did just that. He would spend the remainder of his life in the quaint Ohio town, enjoying the company of new friends.
He had a life-long passion for literature, food, drink, women and ribald poetry. For those who knew him, Bryan’s death leaves behind a world moderately more moral, but a hell of a lot less fun.
Bryan is survived by three sons: Andrew of California, Matteo of Yellow Springs and Tommaso and his wife, Teresa, and son, William, all of Yellow Springs.
A memorial service is tentatively scheduled for May 23, at Bryan’s home in Yellow Springs.
When things go wrot don’t scrim and rage,
But tonk the rivelling spandrel
To zax the thumbat in the swage
and cob the sissing mandrel.
Don’t blub and frit and wrench the plug
When sad from soffit sarking,
But nicker to the munnion pug
And listen to its barking.
Go down, unsneck the splocket hotch
And caulk the dozy rabbet
That clunches on its scabbling scutch,
And, burling, pounce and crab it.
Then cant and pour the scumbling gore
And butt and brotch the tupper,
And when the putlog nugs the door
Invite it in to supper.
—Clunie B. Gregor