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Thomas Frederick Ritter


Born October 7 in Scottsburg, Indiana, Tom passed away in his home surrounded by his family on August 11, 2007 in Dallas, Texas. He was preceded in death by his mother, father, and sister, Martha. He served in the Marine Corps during WWII. After the war he attended Hanover College where he received his bachelor’s degree. He also played basketball during his college years and coached youth leagues throughout his life. His career in the oil business as a geologist and executive with Sun Oil Company allowed him and his family to live and travel around the world. In his retirement, his contributions to the community included planting trees, founding the Whispering Hills Crime Watch, and teaching English as a second language. He passed on to his children his sense of service, duty, and responsibility to the community. He is survived by his wife of 61 yeas, Mae Ritter, brothers Ed Ritter, Paul Ritter; daughters, Lydia Kincade, Mary Jane Boden, Dr. Ann Ritter; 7 grandchildren; and 2 great-grandchildren.

William B. Heroy Jr.

1915 -2006

On September 24, 2006 , William B. Heroy, Jr. passed away in Durham , North Carolina , where he and his wife, Dorthoy, lived in retirement. Bill served as President of the Institute for the Study of Earth and Man (ISEM) at Southern Methodist University, from 1971 to 1981. He succeeded his father, ISEM’s Founding President, William B. Heroy, Sr.

Bill majored in geology, earning a B.S. from Dartmouth College in 1937 and his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1941. He worked in the southwest for Texaco during World War II, and then joined the Geothechnical Corporation in Dallas, where he worked from 1945 to 1965, advancing to President of the company. Geotech was bought by the Teledyne Corporation in 1965 and Bill continued there as a senior executive until he resigned to accept the position of Vice President and Treasurer of Southern Methodist University in 1969.

Bill was always active in civic and professional affairs, having served in leadership roles in Dallas Geological and Dallas Geophysical Societies, numerous committees of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists, as longtime Treasurer of the Geological Society of America, and as President of the American Geological Institute.

Bill’s career touched many lives and many institutions and left each the better. He believed very strongly in “paying back” to society and he contributed generously of his time and efforts wherever he was asked and where he felt he could make a difference.


The Institute for the Study of Earth and Man at Southern Methodist University is pleased to announce the receipt of a gift from Jack Hamilton in memory of William B. Heroy, Jr. The gift is to initiate the Heroy Geoscience Student Support Fund in the Institute. In making the gift Hamilton said, “This gift is intended to recognize Bill’s lifelong commitment to the geosciences and his understanding of the importance of financial support in preparing geoscientists of the future! It is certainly my hope that this initiating gift will grow through the support of Bill’s many friends.” Jack Hamilton was a longtime associate of Bill Heroy in the senior management of The Geotechnical Corporation and then in the Geotechnical Division of The Teledyne Corporation. Hamilton is also a Trustee of the ISEM. In accepting the gift Dr. Louis L. Jacobs, ISEM President, said, “This gift is indeed a fitting way to commemorate Bill Heroy’s life and contributions and we at the Institute are deeply grateful. We share Jack Hamilton’s hope that the fund will grow and thus enable it to support a growing number of students in the geosciences.”

Contributions to the Heroy Geoscience Student Support Fund may be made to The ISEM Foundation, in the care of Dr. Louis L. Jacobs, ISEM at SMU, Box 0274, Dallas, TX 75275-0274. Indicate that the contribution is for the Heroy Fund.

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