June 29, 2022

Obituaries 6/29/2022

Alexander (Sandy) Fraser

June 8, 1937 –June 13, 2022

Alexander (Sandy) Fraser passed away peacefully on June 13, 2022 with his wife, Elisabeth, at his side. Born in Surrey, England in 1937, Sandy spent the war years with his family in Lancashire where his father was a research chemist. The family subsequently moved to Weston Super Mare where his mother ran a small hotel overlooking the sea.

Sandy earned his bachelor’s degree in aeronautical engineering from Bristol University, U.K. He began his career at Ferranti and then at Cambridge University, U.K., where he was awarded a Ph.D. He was recruited to join AT&T Bell Labs in 1969. He became Director of its Computing Science Research Center in 1982, Executive Director in 1987, and Associate Vice President for Information Science Research in 1994. In 1996, when AT&T spun off Lucent and Bell Labs., Sandy, who was passionate about research, led the effort to establish Shannon Labs. (AT&T Labs Research) in Florham Park, NJ. As VP for Research he ran Shannon Labs. for two years, at which time he was appointed Chief Scientist so that he could focus his time and research energy on the development of a new architecture and protocols for a large-scale internet focused on networking to the home.

In 2002, Sandy retired from AT&T and formed Fraser Research in Princeton, NJ, where he continued his research and provided summer internships for a few select graduate students interested in networking. In 2009, he completed his vision for redesigning the internet.

While at Ferranti, Sandy developed Nebula, a language and compiler for the Sirius computer. At Cambridge University he developed the file system for the Atlas 2 (Titan) computer. Once at Bell Labs, in the early 1970s, Sandy’s attention turned to computer networking. He invented cell-based networks, the precursor to Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM), one of the foundational protocols of modern data communications. He also developed Datakit, the first virtual circuit network switch, which became the backbone of the AT&T telecommunications network.

In the late 1980s, Sandy created the Experimental Universities Network (XUNET) project to promote graduate research on computer networks. Eight universities and labs across the country were linked by a network of Datakit Virtual Circuit Switches joined by high-speed links to provide a wide area systems research laboratory where student researchers could run network experiments.

Although Sandy’s research focused primarily on networking, he was also interested in the benefits that improved networks could provide. He recognized and nurtured technologies that connected people to the internet using cable TV channels, a variety of wireless approaches, and fiber optics believing education and audio and video to the home would require large amounts of bandwidth.

In the late 1990s he developed a plan for a network architecture to bring high-speed networking to the home — a capability which is now taken for granted but was almost unknown 25 years ago. Realizing that the new network infrastructure would need a business justification, Sandy promoted research projects that would “fill the pipes.”

Among these projects was high-fidelity audio coding. Sandy supported researcher participation in ISO MPEG, resulting in the MPEG Advanced Audio Coder (“AAC”) international standard. Sandy promoted AAC use to other companies, notably including Apple, which adopted AAC for its iTunes music application.

Sandy contracted for the development of innovative test platforms for AAC, including the Euphony processor, one of the first System-on-Chip microprocessors. Euphony was the “brains” of one of the first solid-state music players, FlashPAC, which was used to demonstrate AAC to potential adopters.

Today AAC is deployed on every smartphone worldwide and is one of the most widely used music compression applications — if someone has MP4 files, they’re using AAC.

Sandy has received numerous awards for his pioneering contributions to the architecture of communication networks through the development of virtual circuit switching technology. He was a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the British Computer Society and IEEE. He was a life member of ACM. He received the 1989 Koji Kobayashi Computers and Communications Award “for contributions to computer communications and the invention of virtual-circuit switching,” the 1992 ACM SIGCOMM Award for “pioneering concepts, such as virtual circuit switching, space-division packet switching, and window flow control,” and the 2001 IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal “for pioneering contributions to the architecture of communication networks through the development of virtual circuit switching technology.” Sandy has over 20 patents and published numerous professional papers.

As a young man, Sandy was an avid cyclist going on weekly rides with the local club (a passion he passed on to his sons). He enjoyed club cycling with his first wife, Thirza, who sadly died at the young age of 31. Sandy and Elisabeth were married in 1971 and subsequently built their house in Bernardsville where they raised their two sons, Tim and Ben. Sandy enjoyed building things and creating things and always had a workshop. He also loved being outside in nature. He especially loved being close to the ocean and the family spent many memorable vacations on Kiawah Island, SC.

Sandy is survived by his loving wife, Elisabeth, his son Tim and family of Franklin Township, NJ, Ben and family of East Amwell, NJ, and grandsons Jake, Tyler, Grey, and Leo. Sandy also leaves siblings Carol of Manali, India, David of Pearland, Texas, and Tina of Princethorpe, U.K.

Burial of his cremains will be private; a celebration of his life will take place October 1, 2022 at the Hunterdon Art Museum in Clinton, NJ, and also on August 6, 2022 in Cambridge, U.K.

In lieu of flowers, a donation in his name may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or to a charity of your choice. For more information please email fraserpublic62@gmail.com.

Arrangements have been under the direction of the Kimble Funeral Home, Princeton, NJ.

Share memories at TheKimbleFuneralHome.com.


Rita A. Novitt

Rita A. Novitt born on July 12, 1921, passed away peacefully on April 27, 2022, at the incredible age of 100. She will be remembered for the amazing life she lived on her own terms. She was preceded in death by her parents Adam and Victoria Novitt, her siblings Ceifert “Duke” Novitt, Charles Novitt, Anna White, and Marie Minwegen. Surviving her are several nieces and nephews as well as many great-nieces and nephews and their children. In fact, because Rita never had children of her own, she became the beloved “Gigi” to the May, Stevens, and White families and the surrogate great-grandmother for Katie, Noah, Haley, Emily, and Joshua.

Rita was born in Spotswood, NJ, and lived the first 88 years of her life in New Jersey. Rita graduated with her bachelor’s degree from Douglass College in New Brunswick, NJ. Rita spent most of her adult life working for Johnson & Johnson and was a trailblazer for women in the workplace. She was one of the highest-ranking women at J&J when women were not able to become executives. In retirement she tended to be even more active and influential as she served on the boards of the Fielding Institute, Kellogg Foundation, Thomas Edison State College, and Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences. She was also a member of the Douglass Society and featured in the book, Who’s Who of American Women 1991-1992.

Rita will be buried at St. Gertrude Cemetery in Woodbridge, NJ, next to her father and mother. A memorial mass will be held in her honor on Wednesday, July 6 at 10 a.m. at the St. Paul Parish, 216 Nassau Street in Princeton, NJ. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to the Parish Library at St. Paul Parish.


Marian Carter King Green

Marian Carter King Green (age 84) died peacefully on June 15, 2022 in Santa Monica, CA.

Marian was born in New York, NY, on September 5, 1937. Her parents, Frank Lamar King and Gladys Merritt Carter King, were actors and later Lamar went into government service. Marian grew up in Chevy Chase, MD; London, England; and Berlin, Germany, where she graduated high school in 1955. Marian was the oldest of four sisters.

After high school, Marian
traveled to New York City to follow her dream of becoming a model and an actress. She moved into the renowned Rehearsal Club on 53rd street. Billed as a “theatrical girl’s boarding house,” the Rehearsal Club was home to famous artists like Barbra Streisand and Carol Burnett. Marian also was a cigarette girl at the Roxy Theatre in New York. It was there she met Grant Dickson “Dick” Green, the theater’s manager at the time, whom she later married in 1960.

Marian had a son, Christopher Nelson Green, in 1962, followed quickly by a daughter, Sallie Merritt Green, in 1963. The family settled in Princeton, NJ, when Dick took a job at Princeton University. Marian was a homemaker until her children were in junior high school when she decided to start her career again. Marian became an administrative assistant at Princeton University, a professional organizer, and she sat on the town’s fire commission. After leaving the University, Marian got her residential real estate license.

Marian’s husband Dick passed away in 1998 and, eventually, Marian began spending time with Joseph “Joe” Shelley. Marian and Joe were together for seven years and they enjoyed their time immensely, traveling to many places here and abroad, going to the theater and seeing concerts. Marian also loved spending time with Joe’s five children and eight grandchildren who she considered her own family. Joe passed away in 2009. Marian stayed in New Jersey until 2016, when she moved to California to be closer to her daughter.

Marian was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2016 and she spent her remaining years being looked after by a capable and compassionate care team at Welbrook Memory Care in Santa Monica, CA. Marian is survived by her son Christopher Nelson Green, her daughter Sallie Merritt Green, and her sister Sallie Jones.

If you would like to honor Marian’s life, please consider making a donation to the Alzheimer’s Association (alz.org) to help end Alzheimer’s disease.


Memorial Service – Rhett

Celebrating the life of Haskell Emery Smith Rhett


Friday, July 8, at 4 p.m.

Trinity Church

Reception following

For more information, trinityprinceton.org

(609) 924-2277