Celebrating the life of Dr. Robert George Aitken
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Dr. Aitken was born in New York in 1944 to the late Marjorie D. Aitken and the late Robert P. Aitken. He was raised in Morton, Pennsylvania and White Plains, New York. He graduated from Archbishop Stepinac High School, Fordham University (Bachelor of Science), Northwestern University (Masters in Physics) and the University of Illinois (Ph.D. in Physics). He excelled as a Research Scientist, winning multiple Research Grants from, such groups as, the National Science Foundation, in order to, among other things, bring Dr. Bizhong Li, of Fudan University in Shanghai, PRC, to the United States to work with him. They built testing facilities, researched and published papers in Scientific Journals on such topics as anti-magnetism, one of whose applications was for use on high-speed trains, such as Europe’s TGV, whose wheels “float” above the tracks. In semi-retirement, Dr. Aitken taught Physics at Bergen County Community College in New Jersey.
Dr. Aitken also was a political activist, starting with canvassing he did in Wisconsin. He also was an actor in regional theatrical productions, eg. his starring role in a production of the play (and source of the 1950 film with James Stewart) HARVEY in Natchitoches, Louisiana. His other interests included astronomy, history, and gardening.
Most importantly, he was a devoted father and grandfather. He is survived by his son, Seanpaul, daughter-in-law, Sasha, his grandson, Aiden, granddaughter Nyaizha, as well as Seanpaul's half-siblings, Louise and Robert, and his two brothers, Bruce (a semi-retired Computer Association Director and film producer, in Houston, Texas) and Gerald (a retired Security Manager and author, in Dover Plains, NY). Shortly before his final illness, Dr. Aitken visited his son and family in Alaska, where he participated in hiking, gold mining, and visiting hot springs, among other things.
A private Memorial Service was held for Dr. Aitken at Grace Episcopal Church in Middletown, New York. Remembrances can be made via the website of Applebee-McPhillips Funeral Home in Middletown, NY, www.applebeemcphillips.com. Contributions in his name can be made to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City (www.mskcc.org)
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