Chauncey Shafter Goodrich Jr.
Died peacefully on the morning of Nov. 14, 2013, at the age of 93. He was born in San Francisco on March 18, 1920, and was raised in Saratoga when the Santa Clara Valley was known for its fruit orchards. He attended the Thacher School in Ojai, and then Yale University, graduating in 1942. Uncle Sam wanted him to learn Japanese for the war effort, and he eventually served in occupation headquarters in Tokyo. While in training at Fort Snelling, Minnesota, he met and married Dorris West, his wife for 68 years.
After the war, the couple enrolled in graduate school at UC Berkeley, earning their doctorates in 1952 (Dorris, sociology) and 1957 (Chauncey, classical Chinese). Prof. Goodrich taught at Cambridge University before joining the UCSB faculty in 1964 in what was then the Department of German and Russian. There he laid the foundation for the modern Department of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies, from which he retired in 1987. He was an active member of the American Oriental Society, primarily as Far Eastern editor of the AOS journal and as a participant in annual conferences, particularly the meetings of the western branch; he was honored with the AOS presidency for the year 1998-99.
He was a scholar, and many have remarked that he was a gentleman of the old school. Even casual acquaintances quickly recognized his consideration for others.,He will also be remembered as a quiet man. Those who got to know him soon enjoyed his ever-present wit and glimpsed his erudition and extraordinary sensitivity to all manner of stimuli: he noticed the light on the hills, and enjoyed good food and wine; he loved music -- his children recall his filling the house with Bach while practicing the cello suites, and later he sang with the Santa Barbara Master Chorale; he valued the feelings of those around him and worried over the human condition.
Besides his wife Dorris, he leaves four children: Anne Heck, and David, Jonathan, and Chris Goodrich, as well as ten grand-children and three great-grand-children (soon to be joined by a fourth). There will be a memorial service in the months ahead.
Published in The Santa Barbara News-Press Online Edition from Dec. 4 to Dec. 8, 2013