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In Memorium

Laurel Gene Fechner

Clan Sinclair USA Historian Emerita
Born 8 August 1937
Died 27 September 2002

From: "Donald Sinclair" <>
Date: Thu, 03 Oct 2002 09:58:36 CDT

To The Sinclair Discussion List

It is with deep regret that I announce the passing
of Laurel Gene Fechner Historian Emeritus Clan Sinclair USA
Friday September 27 2002. We all express our sympathies
to her husband Donald and Family.

Laurel, was a consistent poster to the Sinclair discussion list
and a fountain of information on Sinclair history.
She will be sorely missed.

Please join me in expressing our condolences.

Respectfully submitted.

Donald Sinclair
Clan Sinclair USA

From: "Rory Sinclair" <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 11:27:58 -0400

Dear List:
this is indeed a shock.
I had no idea (not that I should have) that Laurel was unwell.
She was spunky and conscientious and I will miss her.

Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 12:47:06 EDT

Greetings, dear Cousins:

I was very sorry to hear of the loss of Cousin Laurel Gene Fechner. She was a gracious lady. I corresponded by snail and E-mail and by phone. She spent some of her early years in my home county of Indiana, so we talked about many of the places we both knew.

When I learned that The Boone Society Reunion would be in Wilsonville, Oregon (Greater Portland) I mentioned it to her. She said that the headquarters hotel was 30 mins. from her home. I invited Laurel and her husband Don to the opening night Barbecue. They attended. I learned, when she came, that her report from the doctor that afternoon was not good.

We had a pleasant time, but you could tell that she was not well. She was still sharing history with those she met that evening. In early Sept. I rec'd. my last E-mail from her. She basically said that the day of the Barbecue was the last fairly good day. She was at that time under hospice care at home.

When Laurel was well, she was a constant contributor to the Clan Sinclair Discussion List. She was vitally interested in our Clans History and was certainly knowledgeable.

I hope in some small way this message will serve as my Tribute to Laurel. Laurel is now with our ancestors. I am sure that all of the best of Scotland's Past were formed in a great procession, lined up to welcome such a Scottish/Sinclair Hero to her great reward. Rest in Peace, dear Cousin Laurel.

Many of you knew her much better than I, and to you, I express my sincere sympathy. I, especially, send sympathy to her faithful husband, Don.

Your Cousin Ivan D. Lancaster of Trafalgar

Date: Thu, 03 Oct 2002 13:10:19 -0400

As is Ivan, I am a Hoosier. Laurel's daughter at one time lived in Indianapolis. Laurel contacted me to arrange a dinner together while in town and visiting her daughter. It was a wonderful and happy occasion. She and I also stayed in touch with E-mail, snail mail, and phone calls. Her last letter in September told me her cancer had spread to her other lung and she had great difficulty breathing.

Her body is now new. She is in heaven with her forebearers, and her childhood pets. I will miss her very much. She has done a lot for Clan Sinclair. She was n ot a drinker, so I always offered to drink for her. A small glass of Highland Park for you tonight my dear Laurel. Rest in peace.

Donald Sinclair, fellow Hoosier

From: I Newman <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 2002 02:25:45 +0800

I was very sorry to hear of Laurel's passing.

She was always so helpful, informative and cheerful on the list and in the few email exchanges I was fortunate enought to have had with her during the brief time I have been a list member.

My sympathies and thoughts go out across the miles to her family.

Valé Cousin Laurel, from down under.

Ian Newman
Perth, Western Australia

From: "Gary M. Sinclair, Harwich MA, USA" <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 17:22:37 -0400

I had the distinct pleasure of meeting Laurel at the 1998 gathering in New Hampshire.

Laurel was a delight to be with. My son and I will never forget marching down main street of Lincoln New Hampshire with Laurel and the "family" It was my honor to have met her.

Rest in peace Laurel and thank you for giving of yourself to your extended family.

With sorrow for her passing but joy for having had the opportunity to meet her,

Gary M Sinclair
Harwich, MA

From: "Stanley St. Clair" <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 19:50:39 -0500

I had previously expressed my great sorrow to Don Sinclair and Mary Selver. I wish also to join the others on the list in sharing with all of you in the feeling of emptiness that all who shared with her and came to know her have at this time.

Laurel was an inspiration to us all to press on to conserve the knowledge of both the triumphs and sadness of the past which make us the great family that we are.

To Laurel's husband, Donald, and all of her family I offer my deepest condolences. She will be sorely missed by many.

Stan St. Clair, GA Commissioner, Clan Sinclair, USA

From: Deborah Ly <>
Date: Thu, 03 Oct 2002 17:36:27 -0700

On behalf of my family. I would like to express our deepest sympathy at passing Laurel Fechner.

Debbie Gamble -Ly
granddaughter to Helen Louise St. Clair of Texas

From: "John S. Quarterman" <>
Date: Thu, 03 Oct 2002 19:56:30 -0500

Early on, when I was starting these web pages, a source of energy appeared and set to building. Laurel wrote most of the FAQ before she branched out into the Clan Sinclair USA history pages. And of course she was a fixture on the discussion list. Her spirit was instrumental in attracting members and enthusiasm.

Like Pete Cummings two years ago, now she is gone. Others will have to sift and sort and build history.

Although I corresponded with her for years, and we collaborated on a few projects, I never met her, but I will miss her.

Because we don't know when we will die,
we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well,
yet everything happens only a certain number of times,
and a very small number, really.
How many more times will you remember
a certain afternoon of your childhood,
some afternoon that's so deeply a part of your being
that you can't even conceive of your life without it?
Perhaps four or five times more, perhaps not even that.
How many more times will you watch the full moon rise?
Perhaps twenty. And yet it all seems limitless.

—Paul Bowles, The Sheltering Sky

A collection of messages sent in commemoration of Laurel Fechner is in

John S. Quarterman <>

From: Penelope Blair Hillyer Law <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 2002 17:33:34 -0700 (PDT)

I am so sorry to hear of Laurel's death. I never had the opportunity to meet her but corresponded a few times through the internet. Her thirst for knowledge and her passion to share all she learned benefitted all of us here on the List, a s well as Sinclair descendents to come. She was a delightful, generous soul whose work will live on. I will miss her.

From: "Neil Sinclair" <>
Date: Fri, 4 Oct 2002 01:55:16 -0400

Dear All;
A passion for history and heritage was something that we all are richer for because of Laurel's contribution. To make a positive contribution in the lives of others is what all people desire. Thank you Donald for sharing this sad news and through you we share our sympathies for Don and her families loss and sorrow. At the same time we share in celecration for the life of Laurel and her kindness and insights that we all enjoyed.

Neil Sinclair

From: Jean Stokes <> Date: Fri, 04 Oct 2002 16:28:04 +1000

Dear all,
I did not have the good fortune to meet with Laurel, but we did talk a few times on the Net. She was extremely kind and able to pass on information that we needed as we began the Australian data base. However I am also speaking on behalf of Clan Sinclair Australia, so I am extending our sympathy and regrets to her family, and to those of our Clan, who knew her far better than we did. I know our genealogist is very sad today to hear of her death.


From: Joe Erkes <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 2002 07:16:59 -0700

I was saddened to hear about Laurel's untimely death. Although we never met I admired her. Her untiring work on clan genealogy and history will stand as an enduring monument to her scholarship and her generous character.

My deepest condolences.

Joe Erkes

From: Sally Spangler <>
Date: Fri, 04 Oct 2002 11:23:21 -0400

I did not know Laurel except by her posts. A lady of complete knowledge and quite willing to share that knowledge. We are all the losers. She is the gainer - the battle over and the race thru the tape into the arms of all her Sinclairs. To Don her hasband and to all her family, my deepest sympathy.


Date: Sat, 5 Oct 2002 15:02:46 EDT

Dear Donald,

How sorry we are to her of Laurel's passing. She will be missed by all of us on the List, and we know especially by her family. Our sincere condolences on your loss.

Donald & Mary Sinclair, San Rafael, CA.

From: "Judy Carter" <>
Date: Sun, 6 Oct 2002 19:17:50 -0500

I'm am so sad to hear of Laurel's passing. Please give all my blessings to the family.

As always


From: Alice Miller <>
Date: Wed, 9 Oct 2002 11:56:01 -0700

Dear Clan,

We first met Laurel and Don at the New Hampshire Highland Games when Clan Sinclair was the honored clan. I've enjoyed the years of correspondence and (I think) she did the article on Sinclairs and Mary Queen of Scots based on some information I gave her. I know she was at first somewhat put off and then intrigued by the Renaissance reenactment group I belong to which represents the court of Mary Queen of Scots in 1562. We shall miss her knowledge, her quest for the truth, her spunk, and her cheerfulness.

Martin and Alice Miller
Modesto, CA

From: <> (Jen)
Date: Sat, 07 Dec 2002 10:12:02 -0600

Greetings Sinclairs,

Having been away from touch for some time and away from computers I only just realised tonight that we have lost our dear Laurel. She was such a beautiful spirited person and I loved having contact with her. My love to her family.

I hope and trust that your research has all been coming along well.

Jen Coster

Most of these messages were posted by their authors to the Sinclair Discussion List.
If you would like to add a message, please send mail to

Last changed: $Date: 2002/12/08 01:29:08 $ [Clan Sinclair]