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Leo Frank deSaussure, 1930-1987

LEO FRANK deSAUSSURE 1930-1987

Frank deSaussure passed away during October of 1987 to the regret of all who knew him. A resident of Oceanside, California, he was an engineer and writer by profession. He is survived by his wife Valeria.

His mountaineering experience extended over some thirty-five years, in the Sierra Nevada of California, Yosemite Valley, the Cascades of Oregon and Washington, the Selkirks and British Columbia Coast Range, where he made several first ascents and new routes. In New Mexico, where he lived when he joined the American Alpine Club in 1964, he did new routes on Brazos Peak, including the Campanile Ridge, and in the Organ Mountains.

Frank was a very competent mountaineer who enjoyed the mountains as a source of recreation, philosophical inspiration and friendship. As one of his climbing friends observed, “He had a special knack of giving everyone around him a greater sense of their own special dignity.” He was more openly philosophical about the mountains than many of us. As he once wrote, “In my case it was the mountains that prevailed over other calls to form the longest lasting attachment and the one to which I will return on the day of death.” Frank’s many mountaineering companions will sorely miss his friendliness, competence and engaging sense of humor.

Joseph C. Firey