Russ died Sept. 14, 2003, in the New York State Veterans' Home in Jamaica, N.Y., from complications of progressive dementia, which was diagnosed in 2001.
While he forsook his plan to study English and romance languages at Stanford, he forged a lasting reputation and published eight books and many articles on gambling and magic, which he discovered at age 9.
Following two years in the Navy, Russ entered Andover, from which he graduated with honors. He joined our class in 1948, nattily attired in a bow tie, and seemed the quiet older brother in the second entry of Lockhart. Russ belonged to Key and Seal, majored in English, and became fluent in French and Spanish.
In 1960 he moved to New York City, where he nurtured his interest in gambling and magic. His publications included a translation of the Eugene Villiod trilogy, Crooks, Conmen, and Cheats; and his last book, Beating the Wheel, sold more than 30,000 copies. Russ was honored by the Institute of Gaming and Commercial Gambling at the University of Nevada in Reno, to which he had donated his entire gambling library.
A lifelong bachelor, Russ was survived at the time of his death by his brother, Kenneth '45, and four nephews, to whom we offer deepest sympathy.
The Class of 1952