In Memoriam: Earl M. Young Jr.

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The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with great sorrow the death of retiree Earl M. Young Jr., on May 9 in Pocasset, Mass.  He was 82.

Earl was born in Boston, Mass., on December 13, 1933. He was the son of Rose (Hanson) Young and Earl M. Young Sr. Earl was raised in Wollaston, Mass., until the ninth grade when his family moved to West Hartford, CT. Earl graduated high school there and then graduated from the University of Connecticut Technical School. After graduation, Earl enlisted in the USAF. While in the USAF, Earl was stationed at Gardermoen Airport in Norway where he met the love of his life, Gerd. Earl and Gerd were married at Bjerke Church, Norway, and spent the first year of their marriage in Banbury Cross, England. The couple then moved to Pocasset and lived there for over 50 years. Earl and Gerd recently celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary in September. Gerd predeceased Earl in October.

After leaving the military, Earl worked for Mida Corporation and then Voice of America installing radio towers in Liberia and South Africa for the first few years.

Earl then went to work for WHOI in the mid-1960s. He loved being on the ocean and thrived at WHOI. Earl was one of the original members of the Deep Submergence Lab (DSL) and worked with Bob Ballard for many years.  Earl worked his way up to operations manager for the DSL. While with DSL, they discovered the first hydrothermal vents in the Galapagos Islands.  Earl was also on watch the night that the Titanic was discovered. Earl retired in 1996 from WHOI. He left an indelible memory for those who knew and worked with him. After his retirement, he worked for himself doing odd jobs.

Earl enjoyed boating, gardening, traveling, and talking to people. Yes, he did like talking to people once he got to know them. At first meeting people, Earl was a little gruff and earned the nickname “Grumpy.” Once you broke this front, he had a heart of gold and would do anything for you. Earl also loved to spend time with the numerous dogs he and Gerd raised over the years. Earl and Gerd traveled all around the United States and the world.

Earl is survived by his son Kim and his wife, Anne, granddaughter, Nicole, and great-grandson, Michael, whom he loved to bond with. He is also survived by Anne’s brothers Marcel, Robert, Paul, and Kim’s best friends Neil and John, all of whom he all considered to be his sons. Earl also leaves many friends all over the world.

Visiting hours will be from 5-7 p.m., on Thursday, May 12, at Chapman, Cole, and Gleason, 584 Route 28A, West Falmouth, Mass. There will be a service on Friday, May 13, at 10 a.m., at the Funeral Home. Burial will follow at the Mass National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, a donation can be made to the animal charity of one’s choice.

Information for this obituary is from Earl’s family

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