Cover photo for Rudolph C. Meyer's Obituary
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Rudolph

Rudolph C. Meyer

d. February 2, 2011

passed away on Wednesday, February 2, 2011 at Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. He was born on December 12, 1929 and was 81 years of age. Rudy was a person who loved life. He was a friend to everyone he knew. He had a great sense of humor and could talk for hours with others on a variety of subjects. World history, aviation, sailing, ships at sea, computer technology, quantum mechanics, and philosophy were among his favorite subjects.Rudy was also just as happy to tell stories about growing up in Queens, New York, and the thrilling adventures he and his childhood pal Leo Silverman concocted as they played in alleyways and explored apartment buildings. Rudy's parents were superintendents of one building, an important perk for an urban boy, as it gave him and his "band of brothers" access to the endlessly fascinating basement. Like his father, a machinist, Rudy had a knack for numbers and construction, which translated into a career as an aeronautical engineer. His lifelong fascination with flight took off when he won a model-airplane competition at the age of 11, the prize being a flight in a Piper Cub. This interest led him to study at Brooklyn Polytechnic Institute, where he received a master's degree in aerospace engineering. His time in college was split by service during the Korean War. Rudy served in the Army for several years, rising to the rank of Sergeant, First Class. He received the Korean Service Medal with two bronze service stars as well as a United Nations Service Medal.In 1955, Rudy married the love of his life, Jean Marie Bardon, of Queens, New York. Together they traveled to Ohio, where Rudy worked for NASA's ancestor, NACA. During this time, Rudy co-authored two papers that were the pride of his career: "Performance Characteristics of Axisymmetric Two-Cone and Isentropic Nose Inlets at Mach Number 1.90" (1955) and "Design Criteria for Axisymmetric and Two-Dimensional Supersonic Inlets and Exits" (1956).Upon returning to New York, Rudy joined Grumman Aerospace in Bethpage, Long Island, where he worked for more than 25 years. Among his accomplishments were the work he did on the variable-sweep wing design of the supersonic F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft.When he retired and ultimately moved with Jean to Bainbridge Island, Washington, in the late 1990s, he had time to read widely and delve even more deeply into historical events and people. He also spent hours woodworking�a passion he maintained all his life but could now indulge in at leisure. His most recent projects were cooking, baking, and enjoying fine wines.Rudy is survived by his loving wife of 55 years, Jean Meyer; son James Rudolph Meyer (and daughter-in-law Janet) of Lake Stevens, WA; daughter Christina Maria Wilsdon (and son-in-law Anthony) of Seattle, WA; son William Charles Meyer of Lake Forest Park, WA; and daughter Jennifer Brigid Husson (and son-in-law John) of Timonium, MD; and grandchildren Sophie, Rick, Haley, Ryan, Austin, and Dean. He was preceded in death by his mother Christina Meyer (nee Hofer), and father Christian Meyer. In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to The Smile Train, PO Box 96231, Washington, D.C. 20090-6231, or online at www.smiletrain.org.Rudy will be deeply, sorely missed. Dem Leben sind Grenzen gesetzt, die Liebe ist grenzenlos. (Life has limits, but love has no bounds.) Family and friends are respectfully invited to attend the Recitation of the Rosary on Tuesday, February 8, 2011 at 9:30 am followed by the Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 am at St. Cecilia Catholic Church on Bainbridge Island, WA. A reception will follow at the church Conger Hall. Interment will take place on Wednesday, February 9, 2011 at 2:00 pm at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, WA.

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