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Published February 05, 2009, 11:45 AM

Clifford remembered as friend and "larger than life North Dakotan"

Reaction is pouring in today to the passing of former University of North Dakota president Thomas Clifford.

By: WDAY Radio News, WDAY AM

Reaction is pouring in today to the passing of former University of North Dakota president Thomas Clifford.

He died Wednesday night at his Grand Forks home at the age of 87.

Current UND President Robert Kelley says Clifford was an icon.

Senator Byron Dorgan says Clifford was a “larger than life North Dakotan.”

Governor John Hoeven calls him a “towering figure in North Dakota and beyond.”

Earl Strinden. former head of the UND Alumni Association and was a colleague of Clifford’s for decades, said his friend was willing to take risks and encouraged others to make things happen.

Clifford grew up in Langdon, N.D., and was a student at UND beginning in 1938.

After serving in World War Two, he became a part time teacher at the school and worked his way up to the presidency, which he held from 1971 to 1992.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

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