The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution has received word of the death February 13, 2001, of retiree Thomas Lyon in Littleton, NH, after a long illness. He was 73.
homas Lyon was born March 9, 1927 in Brookline, MA. During World War II he served in the U.S. Maritime Service, sailing on Liberty ships to Europe and in the Pacific as a radio operator after attending the U.S. Maritime Radio School. After the war, he served in the infantry as a high-speed radio operator. He attended San Jose State College for a year, majoring in forestry, before moving to Cape Cod in the early 1950s. In 1987, he sailed as a civilian radio electronics officer in the Ready Reserve Fleet to the Persian Gulf War.
Tom Lyon worked at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution for 27 years, many of them in Marine Operations as a radio officer aboard various Institution research vessels. He joined the Institution staff in July 1951 as a radio operator aboard Research Vessel Atlantis. In 1962 he moved to the Research Vessel Chain, working as a relief radio operator on the ship until 1967 and later as a relief radio officer aboard Research Vessel Knorr from 1971 to 1979. During this same time period, from 1963 to 1979, he worked ashore as a lab assistant and later research assistant in electronics for Doug Webb in the Ocean Engineering Department.
Tom Lyon left the Institution in 1979 and worked as a radio electronics officer aboard oil tankers for Sun Oil Co, briefly serving again on the Knorr in 1986. He left the Institution permanently that year, retired, and moved to Waterford, Vermont, where he resided until his death.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth Lyon, of Waterford, VT; two daughters, Sarah Lyon-Callo and Helen M. Lyon; a son, Ben Lyon; and two grandsons.
A memorial gathering will be held at the family home later this year. Memorial donations may be made to Bourne Conservation Trust, P.O. Box 203, Cataumet, MA 02534.