PASSINGS: Thomas W. Ludlow Ashley, Basil Myron Schott

Thomas W. Ludlow Ashley

Ohio congressman fought poverty


Thomas W. Ludlow Ashley, 87, a former Ohio congressman who spent 26 years in Washington and was a strong advocate for public housing, died Tuesday of melanoma at his home in Leland, Mich.

A Democrat known as "Lud," Ashley represented the Toledo, Ohio, area for 13 terms in the U.S. House from 1955 to 1981 and put a priority on fighting poverty in urban areas.

Ashley's great-grandfather, James Ashley, served in Congress from 1859 to 1869 as a Republican and helped shape the 13th Amendment, which abolished slavery.

Ashley was born Jan. 11, 1923, in Toledo. His father owned a small steel manufacturing firm and nearly lost his business during the Great Depression. The business rebounded, and Ashley was sent to Kent School in Connecticut from 1939 to 1942.

While a student at Yale University in the 1940s, he befriended George H.W. Bush, and the two remained close for more than 60 years.

Ashley was a corporal in the Army during World War II, serving in the Pacific theater.

He graduated from Yale in 1948 and received a law degree from Ohio State University in 1951.

He was hired to be a special projects coordinator for Radio Free Europe and was stationed briefly in New York City.

He was elected to Congress on his first try, in 1954.

Basil Myron Schott

Head of Byzantine Catholics in America

Basil Myron Schott, 70, head of Byzantine Catholics in America and the Byzantine archbishop of Pittsburgh, died June 10 of cancer at a Pittsburgh hospital, the church announced.

Schott, born July 21, 1939, in Freeland, Pa., was named by Pope John Paul II in 2002 to lead many of the Byzantine Catholics in the United States. American Byzantine Catholics are loyal to the pope but have liturgical practices similar to Orthodox Christians.

— Times staff and wire reports