Harry Magnuson; aided Idaho institutions
BOISE - Harry F. Magnuson, whose keen investments in Idaho mining companies helped place him among the state's giants in industry and philanthropy, has died. He was 85.
Mr. Magnuson died of cardiac arrest Saturday night at Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane, Wash., where he was being treated for mild pneumonia, said his son, John.
"We've lost a giant," said Cecil Andrus, former governor of Idaho and a friend for more than 50 years. "But he certainly has left a great legacy. It's a terrible loss, not only to his family and me, but to the state of Idaho."
Among Mr. Magnuson's most notable accomplishments is preventing the northern Idaho town of Wallace, where Mr., Magnuson was born, from disappearing because of slumps in the mining industry.
"There would not be on the map today a city called Wallace, Idaho, if it wasn't for Harry Magnuson," said Andrus. "He made absolutely certain that city did not disappear."
Mr. Magnuson had homes in Hawaii and Coeur d'Alene and Wallace in Idaho.
Mr. Magnuson, a Catholic, is also widely credited with helping Gonzaga University, in Spokane, survive a financial crisis several decades ago by guaranteeing loans to the university.
Gonzaga president Robert J. Spitzer, at the dedication of the Harry and Colleen Magnuson Theater in December, noted that without Mr. Magnuson's help, Gonzaga would probably not exist.
A World War II Navy veteran, Mr. Magnuson earned a bachelor's degree in business from the University of Idaho and a master's of business administration from Harvard Business School in 1947.