Omar M. Awad (1940 - 2013)

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AMHERST - Omar M. Awad, 72, of Amherst, passed away March 10, 2013.

Omar was born Dec. 25, 1940, in Hargeisa, Somalia.

He graduated from Sheikh Secondary School and was one of four students in the country selected for a United Nations scholarship to attend college in the United States.

After graduating with a master's degree in chemistry from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Omar taught math and science to high school students for several years. He later served as managing director for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection Western Regional Laboratory before opening Amherst Environmental Laboratory.

Omar is survived by Yusef Awad and his wife Muthoni Magua, Asha Santos and her husband Kevin Santos; grandson Leonardo (Leo) Santos; as well as brothers; a sister in Somaliland; and many nieces and nephews around the world.

He touched many people's lives and will be greatly missed.

A celebration of life service will be held March 30, from 12 to 2 p.m. at the North Congregational Church Parish Hall, 1199 North Pleasant St., Amherst.

Donations in Omar's memory may be made to the Friends of Puffers Pond, Kestrel Land Trust, P.O. Box 1016, Amherst, MA 01004.

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Published in Daily Hampshire Gazette on Mar. 22, 2013