November 13, 2003 - Cleveland Plain Dealer: Niger RPCV Elizabeth Porter dies in Oakland

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Niger: Peace Corps Niger : The Peace Corps in Niger: November 13, 2003 - Cleveland Plain Dealer: Niger RPCV Elizabeth Porter dies in Oakland

By Admin1 (admin) ( - on Thursday, November 13, 2003 - 11:26 pm: Edit Post

Niger RPCV Elizabeth Porter dies in Oakland

Niger RPCV Elizabeth Porter dies in Oakland

Elizabeth Porter, active in public service

Richard M. Peery
Plain Dealer Reporter

Elizabeth Mary Porter, 38, a Beaumont High School valedictorian who served in the Peace Corps in Africa and dedicated her life to public service, died of a cerebral hemorrhage Oct. 25 at her home in Oakland, Calif.

She had lived in several countries and most recently worked as a lawyer serving low-income clients.
Porter was born in Cleveland. She joined the Peace Corps after she graduated from Northwestern University and was assigned to Niger for two years. She later taught English as a second language in New York City.

She attended law school at the University of San Francisco, where she volunteered in the school's refugee law clinic. She joined World Teach and taught in Ecuador so she could become fluent in Spanish to help her clients. She became a staff attorney for California Rural Legal Assistance in Modesto.

Two years ago, Porter began working for the California School Employees Union in San Jose. The union had sought someone who wanted to help poor and working-class people. She handled a wide range of employment and labor law issues. On the day she died, she settled a major unfair-labor practices case.

Porter enjoyed hiking and was a vegetarian. She married John Gragnani a year ago and was expecting a child.

In addition to her husband, Porter's survivors include her parents, John and Loretta of South Euclid; four sisters; and three brothers.

A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Noel Catholic Church, 35200 Chardon Road, Willoughby Hills.

Memorial donations to help an African family may be sent to "For the benefit of Patou Edoh," c/o Chris Ryan, Trustee, Vinson and Elkins, Terrace 7, 2801 Via Fortuna, Suite 100, Austin, Texas 78746.

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter:

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© 2003 The Plain Dealer. Used with permission.

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Story Source: Cleveland Plain Dealer

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Niger; Obituaries



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