In Memoriam: George Erwin LeRoy


The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution announces with great sorrow the death of long time WHOI volunteer George Erwin LeRoy on June 8 in Falmouth after a courageous battle with cancer.  He was 88.

George was born on March 5, 1928 in Barre, VT. George was the sixth of seven children born to the late Elizabeth (MacDonald) LeRoy and Glendon LeRoy. 

George graduated from Barre schools in 1946.  After high school, he enlisted in the Navy.  He attended weather school and became a 3rd class aerographers mate.  He spent most of his military career in Corpus Christi, TX.  After the Navy, George went on to receive his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Education from American International College (AIC) in Springfield, Mass.  While at AIC, he was president of both his sophomore and senior class.  He received the Junior Achievement Award, the McGowan memorial trophy, and was elected to Who’s Who of college students.

After completing college, George became an elementary school teacher, and elementary school principal.  He went on to work for Milton Bradley Company as a designer and author of the Mobile Graphic Teaching Aide, considered an innovation at the time. He then became the director of Elementary Education at Windsor Academy.  While there, he introduced the Individual Guided Education and provided non-graded schools with continuous program curriculums.  He performed many presentations around the country promoting these programs.  He was elected to Who’s Who in American School Administrators and Who’s Who in the East. George completed his 40-year career as the Business Administrator in the Falmouth school system.

In retirement, George spent 20 years as a volunteer tour guide at WHOI.  He truly loved sharing WHOI’s information with the children.  As a tour guide, he had the pleasure of meeting and shaking hands with James Cameron (a movie producer and director of many movies including Titanic.) This was one of his favorite stories to tell.

“George was truly a very special person to me!” said Joanne Tromp, manager of the WHOI volunteer program. “A person you could always rely on. He was a consummate professional.  He so enjoyed giving tours and relished learning and educating himself on everything WHOI!  I am going to miss him dearly!”

George is survived by his son James and partner Marta of Bristol, CT; his daughter Elizabeth McWade of Springfield, Mass; and his son Richard and wife Sue of Hudson, Mass.  He leaves three grandchildren, Timothy and Shannon McWade, and Alex LeRoy.  He also leaves his love and partner, Shirley Bruce.  George is also survived by his sister Florence Perrin and his brothers Winston LeRoy and Kenneth LeRoy and his wife Gerri. George was predeceased by his wife of 49 years, Barbara (Costello) LeRoy, who passed in 2005, his brothers Norman and Floyd LeRoy, and sister Edith LeRoy.

Visiting hours will be held from 10:00-12:00 p.m. on Thursday, June 16, at the Chapman Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, 475 Main Street, Falmouth, Mass., followed by a funeral home service at 12:00 p.m. Burial will be private.

Richard and Sue LeRoy and Shirley Bruce would like to offer their enormous gratitude for the care given by the nurses and staff at JML Care Center.  They also wish to thank the VNA employees for their kindness and care.

In lieu of flowers, a donation in George’s memory may be made to the American Cancer Society, PO Box 22718, Oklahoma City, OK  73123-1718.

Information for this obituary is from Chapman Cole & Gleason Funeral Home.



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