Deaths Elsewhere |

Gerald Arpino, co-founder

of the Joffrey Ballet

Gerald Arpino, who co-founded the acclaimed Joffrey Ballet and oversaw its move from New York to Chicago, has died. He was 85.

Arpino died Wednesday in Chicago after a prolonged illness, ballet spokeswoman Beth Silverman said.

He was a dancer and choreographer when he established the troupe in 1956 with its namesake, the late Robert Joffrey. He choreographed more than one-third of the repertoire of the company, known for commissioning groundbreaking young choreographers, performing socially relevant pieces and reconstructing “lost” ballets of the early 20th century.

Arpino choreographed his first work for the Joffrey, “Ropes,” in 1961. His 1993 work “Billboards,” created to the rock music of Prince, was among many that were considered groundbreaking. His ballets were performed from Moscow to Washington, where four of his ballets were performed at the White House. Associated Press

Gen. Robert Barrow, former

Marine Corps commandant

Gen. Robert Barrow, commandant of the Marine Corps from 1979 until 1983, died in his sleep Thursday at his home in St. Francisville. He was 86.

Barrow earned the Bronze Star with Combat “V” leading an American team that served with Chinese guerrillas during the last seven months of World War II, when central China was occupied by Japanese forces.

In Korea, he was awarded the Silver Star and the Navy Cross. Barrow commanded the 9th Marines, 3rd Marine Division in Vietnam.

His many personal decorations include the Army Distinguished Service Cross, Defense Distinguished Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Navy Distinguished Service Medal, three Legions of Merit. Associated Press

Robert Furman, 93, led spying

for atomic bomb project

Former Army Maj. Robert Furman, who secretly supervised an Allied roundup of top German scientists and European uranium stocks during World War II, has died.

Furman also helped supervise construction of the Pentagon during his Army career from 1940 to 1946.

Furman died Oct. 14, said his granddaughter, Caitlin Furman. The 93-year-old died of metastatic melanoma.

His role in the development of the atomic bomb was cloaked in secrecy. Furman's name did not appear in official documents for decades and he was known as the “Mysterious Major,” according to historian Thomas Powers, who met Furman in the late 1980s while working on “Heisenberg's War,” a book about German bomb-building efforts.

“He was the guy who actually handled all this stuff. He was extremely young, and he had extraordinary power,” Powers told The Washington Post.

An Army reservist, Furman was activated in December 1940 and assigned to the Washington headquarters of the Quartermaster Corps Construction Division, where he supervised day-to-day construction of the Pentagon until mid-1943, according to Steve Vogel's 2007 book, “The Pentagon.”

Gen. Leslie Groves picked Furman as his chief of intelligence, responsible for finding out about German atomic bomb research. Groves ordered Furman to recover for the Allies all the uranium in Europe. He secured vast stores of the element needed for nuclear fission.

When the war in Europe ended, Furman was ordered to round up Germany's top scientists. He supervised the detention of Werner Heisenberg, Germany's leading physicist, and nine other scientists who were taken to England.

Furman also escorted a supply of U.S. enriched uranium from the secret Manhattan Project in Los Alamos, N.M., to the Pacific island of Tinian, where the first atomic bombs to be used in warfare were assembled. On Aug. 6, 1945, he watched the B-29 Enola Gay take off for Hiroshima, where the first atomic bomb was dropped. Associated Press