July 10, 1937 - June 19, 2013
Dr. Richard A. Volz lost his courageous battle with cancer on June 19, 2013. He was born in Woodstock, Illinois to Helen and Emil Volz.
He is survived in death by his beloved wife of 51 years, Mary; daughter, Cindy, and her husband Bill; son, Rick, and his girlfriend, Lisa Sutter; son, Keith; grandchildren, Elizabeth and Becky Chisum; brother, Howard and his wife, Sara; sister-in-law, Carole Volz; brother-in-law, Karl Jensen and his wife, Marilyn; brother-in-law, Ed Jensen; and numerous cousins, nephews, nieces and their families.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Helen and Emil; and his brother, Ken.
As a child and adult he enjoyed the outdoors and scouting during which he earned the Eagle Scout award and later as an adult he was a scout leader. He received his BS, MS and PhD in Electrical Engineering from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. As an undergraduate, he received the Ovid Esbach Award - the highest award given to an undergraduate engineering student.
Dr. Richard A. Volz, an IEEE Fellow, prior to his retirement, was a Royce E. Weisenbaker professor of Engineering in the Computer Science Department of Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. He served as head of that department from 1988 - 1997.
Prior to coming to Texas A&M, he was the founding director of the Robotics Research Laboratory and Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor where he was from 1964 - 1988.
Dr. Volz also served on five federal advisory boards: The Air Force Scientific Advisory Board; the Ada Board; the Aerospace Safety Advisory Board; the NASA Space Station Advisory Panel and the NASA Center of Excellence in Information Technology Advisory Panel.
In addition to his IEEE Fellow Award, he has received a Decoration for Exceptional Civilian Service from the United States Air Force; a Public Service Award from NASA; an appreciation plaque from the NASA astronauts, and the Millennium Medal and the Robotics and Automation Society Distinguished Service Award from IEEE.
Dr. Volz made the most of his time in retirement these last 5 years. He especially enjoyed spending time with his friends and family, which included annual family get-togethers arranged by him. He and his wife made several trips around the country and even to Australia, New Zealand and the Panama Canal. He also spent more time pursing his interest in photography, including a photo safari trip to Africa. He even won awards for his photos, which were published in magazines.
A service celebrating Richard's life will be held Monday, July 1st at 10:30 a.m. at Our Saviour's Lutheran Church on Woodcreek Drive in College Station, Texas.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Our Saviour's Lutheran Church in College Station; the Texas A&M Foundation, 401 George Bush Drive, College Station, Texas 77840, please designate the Richard A. Volz Memorial Scholarship in the memo line of the check; or a