Orazio Giusti, a professor in the department of Modern Languages for 23 years, died Oct. 6, 2006, at his home in Cottonwood. He was 85.

Dr. Guisti was born Aug. 30, 1921, in Muggia, a province of Trieste, Italy, to Quirino and Vittoria Giusti. He attended school in Italy where his lifelong love for languages began at an early age. In secondary school he studied Italian, Latin and French. In high school he studied Italian, Latin, Greek literature and philosophy. He received his doctoral degree from the University of Padua, Italy, where he studied political science, Russian and English.

In 1960, Dr. Guisti joined Northern Arizona University as a professor of French, Italian, Spanish and Russian. He also served as chair of the Department of Modern Languages. He retired from NAU in 1983.

“He was the most fascinating man,” said Sam Borozan, a retired university administrator and faculty member who knew Giusti. “Not only was he a prominent linguist, he was a historian. You could sit and listen to him in awe. He was a well-educated man, a teacher, a gentleman and a scholar. He was a wealth of information and he influenced so many lives, including mine.”

Dr. Giusti is survived by his wife, Juanita Engle-Giusti; his two children, Michele Davila and Jackie Hershey; six grandchildren; his wife’s children, Kathleen Reed Groh, Richard McGaugh, Rebecca Mask and Gwen Groth; her sons-in-law; her eight grandchildren; and family in Italy, including brother Giuseppe Giusti, sister, Maria Valeria Conti, and their children.