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In Memoriam

Martin Kling

Martin Kling, 86, died on September 4, 2014, from complications from pancreatic cancer at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, New Jersey. He was professor emeritus at Rutgers University and a leader in the reading and literacy fields.

He joined the faculty of the Rutgers Graduate School of Education (GSE) in 1965 and quickly earned tenure in 1968. A valued leader, he served as the school’s learning and teaching department chair for eight years. He was a prominent scholar and active member of the International Reading Association, the National Reading Conference, and the College Reading Association. During his time at Rutgers, he mentored many young faculty members and students and was well published in the field of reading education. He founded a reading clinic at the university and the first annual Reading and Writing Conference, which continues to be held marking the 46th annual iteration this coming January. He retired from the GSE in 1991.

"Marty dedicated his life and career to the well-being of children," said former GSE colleague Jeffrey Smith, professor and associate dean of the College of Education at the University of Otago in New Zealand. "He cared passionately that young people not only could read, but that they were able and eager to partake in the brilliance and wonder of the written word. He was an excellent scholar, a kind and caring colleague, and my good friend. I will miss him."

Martin lived in East Brunswick, New Jersey, for 49 years. He was born on August 6, 1928, in the Bronx, New York. He graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in 1949, going on to earn his M.A. and Ph.D. from Berkeley as well.

He was a Korean War veteran, having served in the Army.

After a whirlwind romance that saw them engaged in just six weeks, he married Roslyn Janet Sohmer, the love of his life, in 1958. He was the father of Aaron of El Cerrito, California, Miriam Perkoff (Michael Grossman) of San Rafael, CA, and Larry (Elizabeth Lerman Kling) of Highland Park, New Jersey, and grandfather of Rafael David (deceased).

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