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Arthur Akers (1927-2010)


Posted By: Mark Christian
Date: 8/6/2012 at 22:29:24

From Adams & Soderstrum Funeral Home obituary, Story County, Iowa:

Arthur Akers

BORN: March 24, 1927
DIED: October 24, 2010
LOCATION: Ames, Iowa

Arthur Akers, 83 of Ames, died Sunday, Oct. 24, 2010, at Northcrest Care Center in Ames. Burial will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 28, at Ames Municipal Cemetery, with a memorial service at 1 p.m. Thursday, at St. Johns Episcopal Church in Ames.

Arthur Akers was born March 27, 1927, in Smethwick, (near Birmingham) in the county of Staffordshire, England. He was the eldest son of Arthur and Violet May (Davis) Akers. He joined the British Army in 1944, was therefore an allied World War II veteran, and saw active service in France, Egypt, Palestine, Lebanon, and the island of Cyprus. In 1948, on discharge from the Army, he worked as a leader of the future projects section at Armstrong Whitworth, U.K., on guided missile design and flight trials analysis. He received an Honours baccalaureate degree in physics and mathematics from London University in 1953. After receiving his masterís degree in aerospace from Cranfield University in 1955, he worked as a group leader of new projects at British Aerospace, Bristol, U.K. In 1960 he was appointed Senior Lecturer at Bath University and then went to teach for the Britannic Lords of the Admiralty at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich, London, in 1964.

In 1967 he was commissioned at Horse Guards Parade, Whitehall, Westminster, U.K., in the rank of major and was, until 1975, a serving officer in the British Army Strategic Reserve. He instigated the formation of and led the training teams for logistic supplies of fuel and ammo, for communications and for sapper training.

In 1968 he became a Professor at the Royal Military College of Science, Shrivenham, U.K., and doctorate in mechanical engineering was conferred upon him by the University of London in 1969. During 1973 and 1974 he was a visiting professor in mechanical engineering at the University of Virginia after which he returned to Schrivenham. In 1975 he joined the faculty at Iowa State University. He concluded his professional life as Professor (and then became Emeritus Professor) of Aerospace Engineering in 1999.

In February 1978 he married Marcia Lee (Pratt) Riggs. His honors and awards include Fellow of both the Royal Aeronautical Society (for over 50 years) and of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers International, and the ISU Arthur Akers Outstanding Freshman Engineer Award for the three ROTC units was named for him in 1989. He was co-founder of the Fluid Power Systems and Technology Division of ASME, and spent nearly one year on a worldwide lecture tour, giving details of the Divisionís Engineering Design initiative. He published over 100 international archival technical papers, wrote four text books and was editor of several technical journals.

He enjoyed opera and classical music, foreign and domestic travel, mountain hiking and cycling.

Survivors include his wife; son, Andrew; and eight grandchildren (all living in the U.K.); and one brother, John.

He was predeceased by his parents; his beloved daughter, Judith Maxine Parr in 1999; and his brother, Frank

Memorial Service

October 28, 2010
1:00 PM
St. Johns by the Campus Episcopal Church
2338 Lincoln Way
Ames, IA 50014


Story Obituaries maintained by Mark Christian.
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