Gustave W. Andrian, 99, of Glastonbury, Conn., formerly of Wethersfield, Conn., passed away comfortably on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018, after a brief illness. He was born on Sept. 17, 1918, in Hartford, Conn., the son of William Andrian and Alexandra Perakos. A distinguished scholar, dedicated teacher, accomplished linguist, and Professor Emeritus in Modern Languages at Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., Gus attended Bulkeley High School in Hartford and then graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Trinity in 1940. He entered the Ph.D program in modern languages at Johns Hopkins and at the same time taught courses in Spanish and French in the undergraduate college and also in the Army Specialized Training Program at the University of Maryland. Dr. Andrian returned to Trinity in 1946 as an assistant professor and for the next 44 years was a central figure in the development of modern language instruction at his alma mater. Gus earned a reputation as a painstaking and patient mentor and a bold innovator. He developed new laboratory techniques in language study, established the Masterâ€™s degree program in French and Spanish, an exchange program with Puerto Rico, a Hispanic Studies Program in Cordoba, Spain, and helped to form a state program for Hartford teachers of Spanish-speaking children. Promoted to full professor in 1961, Dr. Andrian was later named the first John J. McCook Professor of Modern Languages in recognition of his scholarly stature and achievement. A prolific author and lecturer, his book, Modern Spanish Prose and Poetry, first published in 1964, and now in its seventh edition, continues to be used in hundreds of schools and universities across the country.
The depths of his humanity matched Gusâ€™s devotion to the life of the mind. Compassion, humility, generosity, warmth and empathy characterized his interactions with others, whether they were immediate or extended family members, students (many of whom continue to honor his teaching), Trinity colleagues and athletic coaches, fellow Trinity Episcopal church parishioners, and most recently friends and staff at the Hearth in Glastonbury. Everyone truly loved Gus!
After raising their own three children, Bobby, Barrie and Billy, he and his beloved wife of 66 years, Peggy, helped to raise her sister Laura Heimbergâ€™s two sons, Jason and Justin, then of Rockville, Md. Gus and Peggy were also prideful and devoted grandparents to Billy and his wife Trishâ€™s children, Liam and Elizabeth of Glastonbury. Gus is also survived by Barrieâ€™s husband, Nick Dixon of Kenmore, Scotland, and Bobbyâ€™s wife, Faith Miller of Marlborough, N.H.
A funeral service is planned for Friday, Feb. 9 at 10 a.m. at Trinity Episcopal Church in Hartford followed by a burial at Fairview Cemetery in West Hartford, Conn. A memorial service at Trinity College is planned for later in the spring. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Trinity Episcopal Church, 120 Sigourney St., Hartford, CT 06105 or Trinity College, Development Office, 300 Summit St., Hartford, CT 06106. Arrangements are being handled by The Ahern Funeral Homes, Inc. To send online condolences to the family, please visit www.ahernfuneralhome.com .