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People

Computer Science Lecturer Dies
in Bicycle Accident

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June 24, 2003 :: No. 267

Les Williams
Les Williams

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Leslie T. Williams, a Cal State Fullerton alumnus, computer science lecturer, photographer and avid cyclist, died June 16 when he was hit by a car in the Santa Barbara area while on a 23-state bike tour.

Williams, 50, who retired this month from his position as a full-time lecturer at the university, was struck by an oncoming car as he crossed the highway to enter Gaviota State Park in Santa Barbara County.

The Huntington Beach resident spent a total of six years teaching at the university, according to David Falconer, associate dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science.

“It’s a great loss,” said Falconer. “He was a well-respected colleague, a favorite of his students and thoroughly enjoyed his hobbies of photography and cycling. We will miss seeing all the photos he was planning to show us from his trip.”

The last time Falconer saw Williams, a Cal State Fullerton alumnus, was June 6, when the faculty member turned in his spring semester grades. A few days earlier, Williams had snapped many photos of graduates and faculty members at the June 1 commencement ceremonies for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Williams left on his bicycle journey soon after.

“I will always remember him as a person who worked hard and who really cared for his students,” added Falconer. “He also had a great sense of humor”

The bicycle journey was something Williams had planned for some time. “He was going to visit 23 states during the course of the summer. His route included retracing the path of the Lewis and Clark Expedition,” said Falconer.

Williams kept in shape by bicycling 20 miles several days a week to and from his home in Huntington Beach to the Fullerton campus, where he taught everything from the principles of software to freshmen through advanced courses in database and computer networking.

He earned a bachelor’s degree at Whittier College and a master’s degree from Cal State Fullerton.

Williams is survived by his parents, Thomas and Albina Williams of Whittier; two brothers and a sister.

Media Contact: Dave Reid, Public Affairs, at 657-278-4855 or dreid@fullerton.edu.


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