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George Lester.
Credit: Courtesy of Julia Lester
George Lester

George Lester, 89, of Salem, Virginia, died Jan. 12, 2024.

“George was internationally known for his contributions to heterogeneous catalysis, including the development of early automotive catalysts and airplane cabin ozone-reducing catalyst systems. He retired in 1996 as a senior research fellow after almost 38 years with AlliedSignal and Universal Oil Products. He was active in retirement, pursuing interests that included learning to fly and teaching as an adjunct professor at Northwestern University. Proudly from West Virginia coal-mining towns, George held 47 patents, published over 50 technical papers, and received several awards, including the 2005 Berea College Distinguished Alumnus Award and the American Chemical Society’s 2002 E. V. Murphree Award in Industrial and Engineering Chemistry.”—Julia Lester, daughter

Most recent title: Senior research fellow, AlliedSignal

Education: BS, chemistry, Berea College, 1954; MS, physical chemistry, 1956, and PhD, physical chemistry, 1958, University of Kentucky

Survivors: Wife, Patricia P. Lester; children, Julia Lester, Kay Handcock, Brooke Lester, David Lester, and Cindy Evans; eight grandchildren; four great-grandchildren

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