Theodore Vial

Obituary of Theodore Vial

Theodore M. Vial, Sr., founding member and past president of Princeton Community Housing, died at home Wednesday, September 17, 2014. He was 93. Ted's family is celebrating his life of service and conviction, his quiet good humor and generous spirit. Born in Ware, Iowa, Ted went to the University of Maryland-College Park, received a Distinguished Flying Cross and Air Medal as part of a glider unit in the Army Air Corps in World War II, and earned his Ph.D. in organic chemistry at the University of Illinois. He spent the bulk of his career in the rubber chemicals division of American Cyanamid in Bound Brook, NJ. While at Illinois, Ted formed a happy and enduring union with Alice Andrews. Alice and Ted celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary in June. Of all his accomplishments, Ted was proudest of their five children, Leslie Owsley, Jane Jaffe, Connie Green, Anne Vial, and Ted Vial, Jr.; their spouses, Tom Owsley, Peter Jaffe, Tom Green, Tom Warner, and Nancy Walsh; and their twelve grandchildren, James Jaffe, Adam Jaffe, Paul Jaffe, Peter Green, Sam Green, Margaret Warner, Katherine Warner, Aubrey Vial, Isha Vial, Vaughn Vial, Jonathan Owsley, and Nicholas Owsley; Jonathan's and Nicholas' wives, Katie Owsley and Rebecca Sama; and four great-grandchildren, Macy Owsley, Natalie Owsley, Georgi Owsley, and Tessa Owsley, all of whom, with Alice, survive him. Ted's concern for his community was founded in his strong faith and developed through his association with Nassau Presbyterian Church where he served as both treasurer and elder, sang in the choir, and taught Sunday School. An advocate for affordable housing in Princeton since the early 1970s, Ted was co-recipient of the Leslie "Bud" Vivian Memorial Award for community service in 2000 for his work with Princeton Community Housing. He was a long-time volunteer for Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic. As a Boy Scout, he earned the rank of Eagle Scout and the Quartermaster Award, the highest award in Sea Scouting. Ted's interest in the world around him was boundless. He was a sailor, a pilot, a woodworker, an amateur photographer and mechanic, a bread baker, a gardener, and a fan of any baby who crossed his path. His children cherish his weekly letters that were filled with both his love of language and his devotion to them. A memorial service will be held at Nassau Presbyterian Church on Saturday November 1 at 11 a.m. The family requests that memorial donations be made to Princeton Community Housing or Nassau Presbyterian Church.
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