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Laylin Knox James, Jr., 86, of Green Valley, Ariz., and longtime resident of Easton, Penn., passed away on Dec. 26. 2013. Born in Pittsburgh to Laylin Knox James, Sr. and Elizabeth Elvira Smith, he was raised in Ann Arbor, Mich. He graduated from New Mexico Military Institute, the University of Michigan, and the University of Illinois, from which he earned a Ph.D. in chemistry. During World War II, he served in the Army. He married Mary Lou Stevens, of Ypsilanti, Mich., in 1952. Together they had four children: Susan, Julia, Sarah (Eric), and Jeffrey (Sue). The family lived in Houston, where Dr. James worked for Shell Chemical; in Cincinnati, where he worked for Proctor & Gamble; and in Easton, from which he retired as professor of chemistry at Lafayette College after 31 years. During sabbaticals, they lived in East Lansing, Mich, and in England and Germany. He is the editor/author of the book, "Nobel Laureates in Chemistry, 1901-1992."

Laylin and Mary Lou have been full-time residents of Green Valley since 1999. Besides his wife and their children, he is survived by grandchildren Alice, Heather, Nils, Emily, Stefan and Lily. Donations in his memory may be made to the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Green Valley or to a scholarship fund in his name at Lafayette College for female students in the sciences. A memorial will be held at a later date.

Published in Green Valley News & Sun on Jan. 5, 2014
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