Thomas Smythe Taylor of Welaka, Florida, and Linville, North Carolina, formerly of Orangeburg, South Carolina, died Monday, July 14, 2008.
My Dad was born May 4, 1920, in Knoxville, Tennessee. He graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1942 where he was elected to Phi Kappa Phi and was a member of Phi Eta Sigma and Delta Phi Alpha.
During World War II he was asked to leave the U.S. Army to work on the Manhattan Project. He was involved with researchers at Purdue University and then moved to the Atomic Energy Commission's project at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. In February of 1946 he was honored for his work on the atom bomb.
After the war he completed his graduate studies at Purdue University. He then went to work in research, administration and production with the Ethyl Corporation in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In 1952 he became the division manage for Ethyl in Orangeburg, South Carolina. He served the community as President of the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. He also served the State of South Carolina as a member of the State Development Board, appointed by former Governor Ernest F. Hollings. He served in this position under four governors. He also was a Boy Scout Leader and tested them all on Morse Code which he still used until his recent illness.
My Dad will be remembered for his love of boating and amateur radio. As a child his call letters were K4CUH (Carolina's Ugliest Ham). Later his call letters were N4LDX. Dad was licensed in 1940 and I have his 60 year pin for QCWA. In his retirement years he was active in the Waterway Radio and Cruising Club, serving as Fleet Captain, Vice Commodore, Rear Commodore and Commodore. He was honored for his service to the club after years of taking position reports by radio for hundreds of its members.
I am attaching to this email a newspaper article regarding my Dad's love of radios from the early age of 8. He was one of the first Americans to hear this broadcast from England in 1928 from a radio he built himself mostly from scrap.
My Dad was preceded in death by his first wife, Rebecca Martin Taylor.
He is survived by his second wife, Lila Alpert Taylor, his four children, Nancy Ferrell and myself, Susan Highfield, of Charleston, South Carolina. A son, John Martin Taylor of Washington, DC, and another son, Michael Thomas Taylor of Columbia, SC. By his grandchildren, Duke Highfield of Charleston, SC; Thomas Ferrell of Durham, NC; Sarah Taylor Ferrell of Charleston, SC; Lindsay, Mike and Bo Taylor of Columbia, SC; and two great grandsons, Thomas and Jake Highfield of Charleston, SC.