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by Susan J. Ainsworth
August 6, 2007 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 85, Issue 32

George B. Butler, 91, a University of Florida professor and polymer chemist, died June 7 in Gainesville, Fla.

Born and raised in Liberty, Miss., Butler received a B.A. from Mississippi College, in Clinton, and a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

He began his career as a researcher at Rohm and Haas in Philadelphia in the early 1940s, working on the synthesis of polymeric binders for propellants.

In 1946, he moved to Gainesville to begin teaching at the university, where he remained for more than 50 years. He founded the school's Center for Macromolecular Science & Engineering, which is known for its contributions to the discovery of cyclopolymerization. Butler also cofounded Peninsular Chem Research Corp., based in Gainesville, to serve the water treatment, textiles, cosmetics, paper, coal, and glass industries.

He authored or coauthored more than 300 publications and six books. He received numerous awards, including the 1980 ACS Award in Polymer Chemistry.

Butler is survived by his wife of 63 years, Josephine, a daughter, a son, and three grandchildren. An emeritus member, he joined ACS in 1941.


W. Eamon Carroll, 59, a chemist and commercial development manager, died on May 22 after an 11-month battle with cancer.

Born in Waterford, Ireland, Carroll received undergraduate and Ph.D. degrees in chemistry from the University of Cork in 1969 and 1973, respectively. After postdoctoral work in organometallic chemistry at the University of Bristol and at the University of California, Los Angeles, he accepted a position at the University of Arkansas, serving as an assistant professor from 1977 until 1979. He then worked for two years at Monsanto in St. Louis before joining Air Products & Chemicals in Allentown, Pa., in 1981.

During his career at Air Products, Carroll led a number of development programs. He was a key contributor to the development of a process involving synthesis and cracking of ethylidene bisformamide to generate N-vinylformamide (NVF). Carroll also played a central role in exploring NVF derivatives and applications of vinylamine polymers synthesized from NVF, including the use of vinylamine copolymers in papermaking, adhesives, and ink-jet receiver coatings.

After his retirement from Air Products in 2002, Carroll collaborated with the University of Pittsburgh and Ohio-based Northaven Specialty Chemicals to develop both a lower cost synthetic route to NVF and amine functional polymer derivatives.

He started a consulting firm, Technology Market Connections, to assist technology providers in identifying commercial applications for their products and processes. He was also the product development director for Cetylite Industries, a Pennsauken, N.J.-based producer of topical anesthetics and disinfection and sterilization products.

Over his career, Carroll authored 25 technical papers and a number of patents, some of which are still pending.

He was an avid gardener and jogger, and also was active in the Institute for Jewish Christian Understanding in Allentown.

Carroll is survived by his wife of 37 years, Judith, and three children. He joined ACS in 1977.

James E. Davis, 69, a retired Westvaco chemical engineer, died July 5 in Charleston, S.C. He had been diagnosed with liver cancer in mid-June.

Davis received a master's degree in chemical engineering from Wayne State University and an M.B.A. from the University of South Carolina.

During his long career with Westvaco, he was involved in evaluating and marketing technology for areas including acrylic resins and liquid-crystal emollients. He retired from the company in 1999 as director of business planning and development. He then served as a director for Foresight Science & Technology, a commercial services company.

Davis had been an active member of the Commercial Development & Marketing Association, which he joined in 1977. In addition, he had been involved with Sigma Xi, the Licensing Executive Society, the U.S. Power Squadron, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, and the Charleston Chamber of Commerce.

He is survived by his wife, Carol, his mother, two daughters, and four grandchildren.

Janos H. Fendler, 69, distinguished professor of chemistry at Clarkson University, Potsdam, N.Y., died July 12 after a one-year battle with cancer.

Born in Budapest, Fendler left Hungary in 1956 and earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry in 1960 from the University of Leicester, in England. He received a postgraduate diploma in radiochemistry in 1961 from Leicester College of Technology and a Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry in 1964 from the University of London.

Fendler started his career in 1965 as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and then spent four years as a fellow in the Radiation Research Laboratories at Mellon Institute in Pittsburgh. In 1970, he joined the chemistry faculty at Texas A&M University, where he focused on micellar and membrane mimetic chemistry. He moved on to teach at Clarkson University in 1981.

In 1985, Fendler joined the faculty at Syracuse University as a distinguished professor of chemistry. He served as director of the Center for Membrane Engineering & Science there from 1987 until 1997. He also held the position of associate professor at the University of Montreal from 1987 until 1994.

In 1997, he returned to Clarkson University as a distinguished professor of chemistry in its Center for Advanced Materials Processing, where he taught until his illness.

Fendler published more than 310 scientific papers, 100 review articles, and three books in the fields of radiation chemistry; physical organic chemistry; micelle and membrane mimetic chemistry; and surfactant, colloid, surface, and materials science. He also served on many journal editorial boards; he was the North American editor for Colloid & Polymer Science at the time of his death.

Fendler won several awards, including the ACS Award in Colloid & Surface Chemistry in 1983.

He was also a connoisseur of fine wines and traveled extensively.

Fendler is survived by his wife, Eliza Hutter, three daughters, and three sons. He had been an ACS member for 42 years.

Obituaries are written by Susan J. Ainsworth. Obituary notices may be sent to and should include detailed educational and professional history.



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