Thorpe Running, age 69, St. Cloud, Minn., died Friday, April 23, 2010 at the St. Cloud Hospital. Funeral services will be Friday, April 30, at 2 p.m. at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, St. Cloud. Visitation will be from 12 to 2 p.m. at the church on Friday. Interment will be in the Columbarium at Bethlehem Lutheran Church. Funeral arrangements were made by Benson Funeral Home, St. Cloud.
He was born Christian Thorpe Running in Fargo, N.D., on April 11, 1941, to Cyrus and Eldrid (Thorpe) Running. Following graduation from Oak Grove Lutheran High School in Fargo, in 1959, Thorpe received a degree in French and Spanish, Summa Cum Laude, from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., four years later.
After marrying Cheryl Benson in 1963, Thorpe attended graduate school at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he received a master's degree in Spanish in 1964. He received a Ph.D. in Spanish from Universidad Interamericana in 1966. A second Ph.D., also in Spanish literature, came from the University of Minnesota in 1974. Thorpe taught at University of Wisconsin (Madison), Luther College (Decorah, Iowa), Concordia College (Moorhead), and Saint John's University and the College of Saint Benedict until his retirement in 2005.
Well known as a scholar of Latin American poetry. He wrote three books and numerous articles on his specialty. Thorpe also was an avid athlete, running marathons in the 1970s, and doing triathlons after that. While on a training ride, he had a serious bicycle accident and became a quadriplegic in 1999. A highlight of his life was the many trips he made to Spain and Argentina, including trips taken after his accident.
He is survived by his wife, Cheryl; daughters, Sara Danger (Paul) and Maren Coltvet (Tim); grandchildren, Maia and Ingrid Danger, Linnea and Anders Coltvet; sister, Anne Sovik (Ed); and brothers, Arne (Nancy) and Tim; mother-in-law, Patty Benson; sister-in-law, Kimberly Zimmerman (Steve); brother-in-law, Michael Benson; and many nieces and nephews. He and Cheryl were blessed by many supportive neighbors, friends, colleagues and morning caregivers.
He was preceded in death by his parents Cyrus and Eldrid; father-in-law Arvid Benson; and sister-in-law Sarah Running. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be sent to Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minn., for the Thorpe Running Spanish Scholarship. Honorary pallbearers will be his grandchildren, Maia and Ingrid Danger, Linnea and Anders Coltvet, and Thorpe's caregivers.
Benson Funeral Home
The link above has a reflection on Thorpe written by Tony Schiller.
(Posted April 27,2010)