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Eric Boe Outwater

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Eric Boe Outwater Obituary
Outwater, Eric BoeEric Boe Outwater, 85, passed away peacefully Monday, August 4 in the Life Quest Nursing Home, "full of beans" to the end. Eric, the son of the late John Ogden and Nenny Boe Outwater, was the devoted and adored husband of Myra Yellin Goldfarb. Survivors include his son Tom and Marina Outwater; his sister in law Alice Outwater, his step children Laurence, Andrea, Andy, Stephanie, Alexander and Kim Goldfarb. He was the devoted Pop Pop to his grandchildren Oliver and Finn Outwater and Gabrielle, Olivia, Caroline, Lucy, Harrison and Myles Goldfarb. Eric was born in New York and moved to England at an early age. His school, the Coppthorne School was bombed by the Nazis. Recalled Eric, "It was bad enough being teased as an American, without having your father donate the money to rebuild the school." He later attended the Stowe School. With the threat of World War II imminent, the family returned to New York and Eric was enrolled in the Los Alamos School for Boys. But within months the school was closed and the students sworn to secrecy as to its existence as the school became the headquarters for the top secret Manhattan Project. The rest of his school career progressed uneventfully. He was graduated from the Choate School, Amherst College and the New York State College of Agriculture at Cornell University. Among his work credentials were 20 years at Weirton Steel and a stint as personal assistant for Norton Simon, president of Hunt Foods. In 1972 he entered government service and served as Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, in charge of programs dealing with pollution, pesticides and other toxic substances. He also tried to regulate ocean dumping and the hazards of radiation. He was one of the first to discover the effects of the Love Canal and directed the clean-up effort. In 1980 he was named to the Committee for the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid. He retired from government to care for his first wife Iris, who died in 1993. He returned to government under the Reagan administration when Secretary of Commerce Malcolm Baldridge asked him to lead trade delegations to China, Hong Kong, Japan and the Caribbean. But while his professional resume was full, he said his life began in 1994 when he married his devoted wife Myra and set forth on a magical romantic adventure that lasted twenty years. Eric and Myra wrote nine books, two plays, curated museum exhibitions and became world travelers. Eric was an avid fly fisherman and soon became an enthusiastic birder, birding in Israel, Japan, Ecuador, Brazil, Panama, Alaska, Norway and Africa. Eric loved family and kept in active touch with his beloved relatives in Norway. He loved the theater, gardening, cooking, creating art and raising koi for his pond. He was kind, generous, loving and always a gentleman. He believed it was his obligation to bring something to the party and make people and strangers feel at home. He was a religious man and proud of his service in his church in New York. "I was the first usher to lead a black family down the aisle and sit them up front," he recalled years later. He was also very proud of his Dutch ancestry and was a member of the Holland Society, and served as Secretary of the St. Nicholas Society of New York. He loved being a member of the Union Club of New York. He will be remembered with joy, love and gratitude. Memories of his upbeat positive spirit and generosity will remain with us forever. Services: Funeral details to be announced. Arrangements by J.S. Burkholder Funeral Home, Allentown, Donations can be made in Eric's memory to the Lehigh County Historical Society, 432 W. Walnut St., Allentown, PA 18102 or The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley's Israel Emergency Fund, 702 N. 22nd St., Allentown, PA 18104.
Published in Morning Call on Aug. 9, 2014
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