Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Dr. Richard E. Watson Dies

Richard E. Watson

Richard E. Watson of Brookhaven, New York, died on Monday, September 13 in his home after a long fight against Parkinson's disease and post-polio syndrome.  He was surrounded by his wife and sons at the time of his death.

Born in New York City, September 30, 1931, to Philip and Helen Watson, Dick was an excellent student and a talented scientist;  He graduated from Putney School in Putney, Vermont, and Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts.  In 1958, he received his Ph.D. in Ohysics from the Massachusetts Institute of Techology.

Following postdoctoral work in Harwell, England, and Uppsala University, Sweden, he spent several years at Bell Labs in New Jersey.  In 1965, he joined the Department of Physics at Brookhaven National Laboratory, retiring as a senior research physicist after 37 years in 2002.

He served on the original Town of Brookhaven Landfill Committee and Technical Advisory Committee, and was a member of the Town of Brookhaven's Conservation Advisory Committee since 1981.  He was President of the Brookhaven Village Association in 1974 and active with Boy Scout Troop 4 for 15 years, serving as scoutmaster for many years.

Dick was an avid gardner and sailor, and lover of classical music.

He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Joan; his son, Phil and his wife, Jill, and their daughters Kate and Leah; his son, Gavin and his wife, Barbara, and their children, Mark, Katherine, Stephen and Paul; his son, Jamie and his wife, Lorena and their daughters, Camille, Paulina, Emily and Lili; and his son, Jay and his wife, Jodi, and their sons Zack and Sam.  In 2007, he was predeased by his first grandson, Matthew Winter Watson.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. on November 26 at St. James Parish Hall in Brookhaven.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Brookhaven Hospice or the American Parkinson's Disease Association.


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