Deceased March 14, 2019
Wilson H. “Tony” DeCamp II of Spotsylvania, Va., died of pneumonia in hospice on March 14. He was 82.
Tony had dealt with Parkinson’s disease for 15 years. Initially, with the help of home-based health care, he was able to cope. As the disease progressed, however, he had to move into assisted living, then to a memory care facility and finally to hospice.
Tony was not happy at Amherst and left during our freshman year. Nevertheless, our 50th reunion class book listed him as an “active classmate,” and he responded to the request of Hendrik Gideonse ’58 for news as recently as 2016. At that time, Tony and his wife, Mary Lazar, had just celebrated their 25th anniversary and welcomed their sixth grandchild.
After leaving Amherst, Tony enrolled at Indiana University, where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemistry, becoming a lifelong fan of Hoosier sports in the process. In 1970, he earned his Ph.D. in physical chemistry at the University of Maryland.
This led to a research career in chemistry. In the 1970s Tony was affiliated with the University of Georgia, publishing research papers in such prestigious journals as Science, Inorganic Chemistry and the Journal of the American Chemical Society. From July 1979 until his retirement in April 2004, Tony continued his research career with the Food and Drug Administration, working as a chemistry team leader.
In his spare time, Tony enjoyed crystallography and genealogy. After his diagnosis, he was actively associated with the Parkinson Pipeline, a patient advocacy group, from 2005 to 2009. At the time of his death, Tony and Mary had been married 27 years, raised five children and stepchildren, four of whom were married, and had eight grandchildren. They remember him as a loving husband, father and grandfather.
Ned Megargee ’58