Carl DeVries, Egyptologist and pastor, 1921–2010

The Rev. Carl E. DeVries, a former faculty member at the Oriental Institute, died Sept. 3. DeVries, a resident of Chicago, was 89.

DeVries, who did research at Chicago House, the institute's center in Luxor, Egypt, helped publish materials from the institute's Nubian excavations. He was an ordained a Baptist minister who authored numerous articles for six Bible dictionaries and encyclopedias, mostly on Egyptian and other Near Eastern subjects as well as articles in scholarly journals.

A native of Jeffers, Minn., DeVries graduated from Wheaton (Ill.) College with a B.S. in 1942, an M.A. in 1944 and a B.D. in 1947. He continued his studies at the University of Chicago, where he completed a Ph.D. in 1960 with a specialty in Egyptology.

Because he lost an eye as a teenager, he could not serve in the military during World War II.Wheaton recruited him as a 22-year-old to be head coach for track and football. Known as "The Kid Coach," he served on the coaching staff from 1942 to 1952. He was also an instructor at Wheaton in Biblical archaeology from 1945 to 1952.

He later taught at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Ill.

He was a member of the Oriental Institute's Nubian Expedition from 1963 to 1964. He served as a research associate with the rank of associate professor at the Oriental Institute from 1965 until 1975, when he retired due to loss of his eyesight.

In retirement he served as a substitute pastor for Chicago area churches and as interim pastor of South Shore Baptist Church. Because he had lost his eyesight, he preached without notes and needed someone to tug on his coat to signal that he had talked long enough, family members recalled. He was active in a number of evangelistic organizations and maintained contact with the Rev. Billy Graham, a classmate at Wheaton.

DeVries is survived by his wife Carol, two sisters, and many nieces and nephews. Services have been held.