L. L. Mendenhall

To: All Staff Members
From: John J. Kamerick
Date: October 6, 1970

Mr. L. L. Mendenhall, Professor Emeritus and former Head of the Department of Physical Education for Men, passed away of a heart attack on Sunday morning, October 4, at Sartori Hospital. He was born in 1892 in Earlham, Iowa.

He received both the L.L.B. degree and the M.A. degree from the University of Iowa, and served as athletic director in the Boone High School and athletic coach at Carleton College prior to joining the staff at the University of Northern Iowa in 1921 as Professor and Assistant Head of the Department of Physical Education for Men. He served as acting head of the department from 1926 until 1933 and as head of the department from 1933 until his retirement in 1960.

Mr. Mendenhall had been a member of Phi Delta Kappa, Phi Alpha Delta, the American Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association, the Wrestling Rules Committee of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, and the College Committee of the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

Former President Maucker wrote the following shortly before Mr. Mendenhall assumed emeritus status:

Mr. L. L. Mendenhall has rendered yeoman service to the State of Iowa during his 39 years at Iowa State Teachers College. Under his direction more than 1,000 physical education instructors and coaches have been prepared for the schools of Iowa .... In the fall of 1921, shortly after Mendy came, there were only 278 men in the entire college.

The Nottger Funeral Home is in charge of funeral arrangements. Services will be held at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, October 7, at the First Presbyterian Church in Cedar Falls, with burial in Bear Creek Cemetery at Earlham. The flag will be flown at half-mast, and the Campanile bells will be played during the time of the funeral service in memory of Mr. Mendenhall. Memorials may be made through the University of Northern Iowa Foundation for the Department of Physical Education for Men (athletics) or to the First Presbyterian Church of Cedar Falls.


Funeral services for former University of Northern Iowa athletic director L.L. ("Mendy") Mendenhall, 78, of 321 W. Seerley Boulevardd, will be 10 a.m. Wednesday at the First Presbyterian Church.

The Rev. Lloyd Haney, pastor, and Dr. David Bluhm, professor of religion and philosophy at the University of Northern Iowa, will officiate. Burial will be in the Bear Creek Cemetery, Earlham.

A masonic service will be 7:30 p.m. today at the Nottger Funeral Home.

Mr. Mendenhall died early Sunday afternoon at Sartori Hospital of a heart attack. He came to Cedar Falls in 1921 to become athletic director and head of the physical education department at the Iowa State Teachers College (now University of Northern Iowa). He retired in 1960.

Mr. Mendenhall was born January 6,1892, in Earlham, to Jesse and Lillian Mendenhall. He attended Drake University, Des Moines, for two years before receiving his L.L.B. from the University of Iowa in 1917.

While at the University of Iowa Mr. Mendenhall was a member of Phi Alpha Delta L.L.B. fraternity and played on the varsity football team.

Mr. Mendenhall played football for the Great Lakes Naval Reserve team in 1918 while serving as naval aviation instructor at the training center there.

Mr. Mendenhall coached the Boone High School basketball team to the Iowa High School state championship. He then went to Carleton College, Northfield, Minnesota, for one year. His basketball and baseball teams won conference titles.

Mr. Mendenhall married Edith Keeney June 2, 1923, in Nashua. She preceded him in death on October 4, 1961. He then married Marie Frankenfield June 6, 1963, in Albert Lee, Minnesota.

Mr. Mendenhall received his M.A. from the University of Iowa in 1933.

While at the University of Northern Iowa he organized the athletic department into its present form. Facilities were expanded and the number of intercollegiate sports increased from four to seven. During his career the North Central Conference of which UNI is a member, was formed.

Mr. Mendenhall was responsible for training 1,000 coaches and physical education instructors. He was a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association Rules Committee for many years and was a well known referee in football and basketball circles.

As an active citizen Mr. Mendenhall was a member of the Cedar Falls Chamber of Commerce, Black Hawk Lodge 65 A.F. and A.M., and the Cedar Falls chapter 78-Order of the Eastern Star, of which he was a past patron.

He was also a member of the First Presbyterian Church, e High-Twelve, Bethany Shrine 9, W.S.J., and the American Legion.

Besides his first wife Mr. Mendenhall was preceded in death by his parents. Survivors include his wife Marie, one brother Otho, Laguna Hills, California; and one nephew Otho, Jr., Springfield, Virginia.

The family requests memorials to the UNI Athletic Department or the First Presbyterian Church.

The Nottger Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Copyright Cedar Falls Record.


Rod Library Special Collections and University Archives
University of Northern Iowa
Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613-3675
Telephone: (319)-273-6307
Fax: (319)-273-2913
Email: Gerald.Peterson@uni.edu