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Edward Everett Horton III

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Edward Everett Horton III Obituary
1927 - 2015 Surrounded by his loving family, noted offshore industry pioneer Ed Horton passed away peacefully in his home on the evening of Thursday, the 13th of August 2015, at the age of 87. He was born on the 13th of November 1927, in San Gabriel, CA to Winter Davis and Edith (Kendall) Horton. He received his BA in civil engineering from Yale University and his master's degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Southern California. While at Yale, Ed entered the Navy as a participant in the Holloway Program and was a decorated veteran of the Korean War stationed onboard the USS Helena. A qualified submariner, he also served on the USS Sea Leopard. Following his naval career, he pursued his love of the oil and gas industry. Selected as a principal engineer for the National Academy of Science on the Mohole project, the original NSF funded deepwater drilling project, Ed contributed to the project's endeavor that created an offshore drilling technological test bed for the then nascent offshore oil industry. He later became the vice president and a board member of Ocean Science and Engineering, one of the most innovative companies of its time in developing first generation floating systems for offshore use. With this dynamic start to his career, Mr. Horton became one of the most recognized inventors in the offshore oil and gas industry. He is the named inventor on what today are considered standard deepwater concepts, spars and tension leg platforms. He was the founder and president of several offshore development companies including Deep Oil Technology which developed and patented the first two generations of spar platforms. Mr. Horton's leadership, vision and ingenuity were well known among his peers in the offshore industry, and to honor his achievements, he was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 2002 after having received the National Academy of Science's Gibb's Brothers Medal the prior year for "visionary and innovative concept development and design of off-shore platforms, mooring systems, and related technology that have significantly influenced development of deepwater operations." Ed was the recipient of many other honors and awards including the lifetime achievement award of the Offshore Technology Conference (1997), Offshore Mechanics Division of the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (1998), Society of Petroleum Engineers (2004), and Petroleum Technology Division of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (2005). In addition he was named an Offshore Pioneer by the Offshore Energy Center, Ocean Star (2008), was chosen as a Rhodes Petroleum Industry Leader by ASME (2005), and was the recipient of a Hall of Fame Award for OTC Papers in Civil Engineering by the ASCE in 2010. As a member of the American Bureau of Shipping, Ed was currently serving as an advisor on their Offshore Technical Committee. He was also an active member of the Marine Technology Society, American Concrete Institute, Yale Alumni Association, Houston Asia Society, and the Advancement Committee of the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at Rice University. In more recent years, Ed's interests were moving in new and creative ways toward floating offshore wind energy, renewable ocean energy, ocean monitoring, new construction methods, and the use of advanced composite materials. Disturbed by refugee loss of life at sea, Ed was recently focused on creating a vessel with a design that could be adapted to evacuate offshore workers. Although he resided in Houston the majority of the year, he was at heart a California man. He and his beloved wife Anne Watts Horton spent a great deal of time traveling the world and at his home in Los Angeles with his family and friends. Edward was a devoted husband, father, stepfather, grandfather, uncle, and cousin to his family and an inspiration and mentor to many others. Together Ed and Anne were members of St. Martin's Episcopal Church, The Dancers Group and the Paul Jones Dance Club, the Utopia Yacht Club in Lake George, New York, and he was a member of the Cosmos Club of Washington, DC. Ed was creative in his industry as well as his private life. He loved music and movies and took delight in creating wonderful poems, many of which were gathered and immortalized for one of his birthdays in a small leather book. He loved to recite poems, especially to children, and was a guest in several classrooms over the years. He loved to problem solve and no issue was too big or too small to engage his creativity. Preceded in death by his first wife Janet Durst Horton, his parents Winter David and Edith Kendall Horton, and siblings, Judith Munk, Amanda Stork, and Winter Horton, Ed is survived by his beloved wife, Anne Watts Horton of Houston; his three daughters, Winter Horton Hoffman and her husband Frederic of Santa Monica, CA, June Horton Van Nort of Palos Verdes, CA, and Janet Horton of Santa Fe NM; grandchildren, Jean-Michel Hoffman, Zazou Hoffman, Kendall Van Nort, John Edward Van Nort, Everett Shipp and Austin Shipp. He is also survived by three step-sons, Browne Baker, III and his wife Robyn of Houston, Jeff Baker and wife Pam of Houston, and Mark Baker and wife Bet of Cohasset MA; and step-grandchildren, Katy, Elizabeth, Emily, and Julie Baker; and his brother-in-law Walter Munk along with many beloved nieces, nephews, and cousins. A small private, family memorial honoring Ed's life will be held at a later date. Memorial contributions may be made in Ed's memory to support the education of policy-minded engineering students at Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy, MS 40, P.O. Box 1892, Houston, TX 77251-1892 or The Offshore Energy Center, 200 N. Dairy Ashford, Suite 4119, Houston, TX 77079 to support the mission of OEC which is dedicated to expand the awareness of the vast energy resources beneath the world's oceans, and to chronicle the unique heritage and technological accomplishments of the industry that discovers, produces, and delivers these resources in a safe and environmentally responsible way.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Aug. 21 to Aug. 23, 2015
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