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George R. Bird

William E. Lawder

George R. Bird

George R. Bird, 79, of Princeton, died April 1.

Born in Bismarck, N.D., he entered the U.S. Army in 1943, serving as a second lieutenant of infantry at Fort Benning, Ga., later in the occupied Philippines.

Following World War II, he spent a summer learning to fly small planes, then entered Harvard College. He graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in chemistry and physics in 1949, then completed his graduate work at Harvard, earning an M.A. in 1952 and Ph.D. in physical chemistry in 1953.

After a postdoctoral assignment at Columbia Radiation Lab, he joined Rice University in 1953 as assistant professor of chemistry. He left Rice in 1958 to join Polaroid Corp. in Cambridge, Mass., where he was senior scientist and manager of the physical chemistry laboratory until 1969. While at Polaroid, he was a co-inventor of the wire grid polarizer and group leader in the development of Polacolor instant film.

In 1969 he moved to New Jersey, returning to academia as a professor of chemistry at Rutgers University. While there, he served as co-chair of the first United States meeting of the International Congress of Photographic Science, and as a Guggenheim Fellow at the Photographic Institute in Zurich.

He retired in 1994 with 80 publications, but continued his research into organic dyes for inexpensive solar cells as a potential source of energy, leading to a patent in 2000 that he shared with two colleagues.

He began mountain climbing and skiing in 1959 with hikes in the White Mountains. It was a passion he shared with his family and friends over the years, until Parkinson's disease curtailed it during the last 16 years of his life.

Predeceased by his wife, Doris, on February 24, he is survived by a son, Peter of Los Angeles; two daughters, Elizabeth Bird of Menlo Park, Calif., and Margaret Suh of Windsor, Ont.; and three grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 1 at Trinity Church.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the National Parkinson Foundation, Inc.

Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather Hodge Funeral Home.

William E. Lawder

William Everett Lawder, 84, of Chapel Hill, N.C., died April 20 after a brief illness. Formerly of Princeton, he was a longtime treasurer of Princeton Theological Seminary.

Born in Orange, he enlisted in the National Guard and joined the Standard Oil Company in 1939. After his unit was activated in 1941, he was sent to California and then Panama. Following his discharge from the Army, he rejoined Standard Oil, working in the treasurer¹s office.

In 1964 he left Standard Oil to become treasurer of the Seminary. He retired in 1986 as vice president/treasurer, but continued as treasurer of the Center for Theological Inquiry until 1991.

He was an elder at Nassau Presbyterian Church, and served as president of the Princeton Personnel Association. A Rotarian, he was also active with Boy Scout Troop 43, a member of the Nassau Club, and a founding member of the Princeton Community Housing Board.

Upon his retirement to Chapel Hill he became a member of University Presbyterian Church, serving as an Elder and Treasurer. At Carolina Meadows he enjoyed the Reading and Baseball Clubs.

He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Marion; two sons, Bill Jr. of Waukesha, Wis., and Keith of Atlanta, Ga.; a daughter, Kathy Kaeli of Harrisonburg, Va.; and five grandchildren.

A memorial service was held on April 24 at Carolina Meadows in Chapel Hill with Dr. Robert Dunham and the Rev. Keith Lawder presiding.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial contributions be made to the Lawder Family Scholarship Fund at Princeton Theological Seminary, P.O. Box 821, Princeton 08542; or to Chatham Habitat for Humanity, P.O. Box 883, Pittsboro, N.C. 27312.

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