Antique Vintage 01

F. Donald Eckelmann

May 25, 1929 ~ December 7, 2019 (age 90)


F. Donald Eckelmann, 90, of College Walk Retirement Community, Brevard, NC died on December 7, 2019. His death followed a long enjoyable and productive life.  He was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Jean, an older brother, and his twin brother.

Born in 1929 to Herman John Eckelmann and his wife Rosa (Schwarz) Eckelmann, Don attended Ridgefield Park High School in Ridgefield Park, NJ. At Wheaton College, Illinois, Don earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geology.  After graduation he attended Columbia University, receiving an M.S. and a Ph.D. degree in the Department of Geological Sciences.  He then spent a post-doctoral year as a Research Associate at Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Don married B. Jean Roberts in June 1953.  The couple had two children, F. Donald, Jr., and S. Diane.  Don is survived by his son Don, Jr., his wife Sonya and their three sons; and, by his daughter Diane Mills, her husband Ernie and their three daughters.

Don’s academic career began in 1957 at Brown University, as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geologic Sciences where he rose to the rank of Professor, served as Chairman of the Department, and as Dean of the College.  Subsequently he was a faculty member at the University of Georgia and George Mason University.  In 1985 he was appointed Professor and Academic Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Ohio University from which he retired in 1994.  The professional achievement he took most satisfaction in was the building of a modern geological sciences department at Brown University in the 1960’s.

The family expresses their thanks to residents and employees of College Walk for their kindness and support during the last days of Don’s life. 

Memorial contributions may be sent to WNC Bridge Foundation/Transylvania, Post Office Box 25338, Asheville, NC  28813.

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