Roger Sidney Edmonds, 73, husband of
Ruth (Walley) Edmonds of 38 High Street, Ipswich, passed away on the
morning of Monday January 17, 2011 at Beverly Hospital.
He was born in Boston January 27, 1937
to Reginald and Marietta (Swett) Edmonds. He spent his early days
in Needham, interrupted by a few years in Mexico where his father
worked as a mining engineer. Graduating from Yale University in
1960 with a BS in physics, he went on to pursue graduate studies in
physics at both Brown University and the University of California at
Davis, earning a MA from UC Davis in Physics. He spent the summers
of his college years working for his sister and brother-in-law at
Monument Inn in Lennox, where he honed his skill as a maker of
Mr. Edmonds was employed at Stanford
Research Institute with Leo Poppoff, then at EG&G in Boston. For
over 30 years he served as a professor of physics and mathematics at
Middlesex Community College in Bedford.
In the summer of 1969, he married the
love of his life, Ruth D. Edmonds, at King’s Chapel in Boston. In
their youth his two sons had the benefit of early morning impromptu
physics demonstrations at the breakfast table. Topics included but
were not limited to the warming of atmospheric gasses, and the
physical properties of water on a hot skillet.
He attended King's Chapel in Boston
for over 30 years, and was also a member of the Unitarian Fellowship
in Ipswich. He was a founding member of a local group called Ipswich
Environmental Inc., and he sought to address local environmental
issues as early as 1971. He was also a proud member of the American
Physical Society, The Ipswich Historical Society, Mass Audubon
Society, Trustees of Reservations, and the Museum of Fine Arts.
His interests and intellectual talents
were very broad. He had a lifelong passion for astronomy, a deep
love of history, and an impeccable knowledge of grammar. One son
remarked that the correct use of grammar could always be measured by
asking, “How would Dad say this?” and employed this method across a
variety of standardized tests with excellent results. At the same
time, Roger was remarkably humble, and was more likely to be known
for his kindness and generosity than his intellectual talents. From
an early age, he adored classical music. As an adult he was perhaps
happiest having a picnic with dear friends and relatives on the lawn
at Tanglewood while the Boston Symphony played. His love of nature
led him on many family vacations to the National Parks, two
favorites being Acadia in Maine and the North Rim of the Grand
Canyon in Arizona.
In addition to his beloved wife of 42
years, Ruth, he is survived by two sons, Reginald W.W. Edmonds of
Gloucester and Grant W.A. Edmonds of Eugene, Oregon; a sister,
Marion Southard of Naples, Florida, and many beloved nieces and
nephews. He was predeceased by a brother, Dr. Hugh Edmonds of
Holyoke and a sister Janice Wallen of Florida.
A memorial service, followed by a
small reception, will be held at 3:00 pm on Sunday, January 23
at the First Church in Salem, Unitarian, at 316 Essex Street, Salem.
Rev. Jeffrey Barz-Snell will officiate with the participation of
Rev. Carl Scovel. Family and friends are respectfully welcomed.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Whittier-Porter Funeral
Home of Ipswich.
Memorial contributions in his name may
be made to the Alzheimer's Association, P.O. Box 96011, Washington,
DC 20090-6011 and, or, the American Cancer Society 30 Speen Street,
Framingham, MA 01701-1803