Frederick Eugene Mills III
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1928 - 2013
Frederick Eugene Mills III, 84, passed away peacefully in Tucson, Arizona on June 21, 2013. Born on November 12, 1928 in Streator, Illinois, he is survived by his loving wife Joyanne, his son Daniel Mills, his daughter and son-in-law, Deborah and Steve Errede, his son and daughter-in-law, Geoffrey and Ellen Mills, grand children Rachel Errede, Jonathan Mills, and Alexandre Mills, and his sister Jacqueline Gallaway. He was preceded by his parents, Frederick (Jr.) and Charlotte Mills, and by his sisters Jeanne Edwards and Helen Stevenson. He was a loving husband and father and will be greatly missed.
Dr. Mills was a Fellow of the American Physical Society and an internationally recognized expert in the field of charged-particle beam and accelerator physics. He made seminal contributions that enabled many of today's particle accelerators. He constructed and operated the first electron storage-ring, synchrotron light-source, which gave birth to a new technique for studying today's super-materials. He helped develop, and later consulted for, the proton synchrotron at the proton-therapy cancer treatment facility at Loma Linda Hospital in Riverside, CA, that has cured thousands of cancer patients. He was one of the very early proposers of high-energy, colliding-beam storage rings, which helped lay the foundations for modern colliders like the Tevatron at Fermilab, Batavia, Illinois and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, Geneva, Switzerland, and led to the discoveries of subatomic particles like the W and Z bosons, the charm, bottom, and top quarks, and the tau lepton.
He received his education (BS, summa cum laude 1949, Ph.D., 1955) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, worked at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, at Midwestern Universities Research Assoc. (MURA) in Stoughton, WI, the Centre des Etudes Nucleaire de Saclay, France, eventually became director of MURA (later PSL), taught physics as a Professor of Physics and Nuclear Engineering at the University of Wisconsin, as chairman of the accelerator department at Brookhaven National Lab., and retired after 19 years at Fermi National Accelerator Lab., where he applied his keen insight into accelerator physics to the development of Fermilab's accelerator complex. He taught accelerator physics courses at UW and UI that spawned new generations of accelerator builders.
As a youth he attained the rank of Eagle Scout. He loved camping, fishing, and canoeing in northern Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Canada, was a skilled handyman, a skier, a hiker, a biker, and enjoyed a game of golf. In retirement, at Sun City, Oro Valley, AZ, he was president of the Astronomy Club and organized a number of star parties, he also taught courses on energy and energy sources for Institute for Learning in Retirement, was the treasurer of the Dem. Club, and was an avid bridge player.
A celebration of Dr. Mills' life is planned for Saturday, November 9 at the Sun City Social Hall, Sun City, Oro Valley, AZ, from 5:00 to 8:00 P.M. In lieu of flowers, please donate to one of the following non-profit organizations:,, or

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Published in New York Times from Jul. 5 to Jul. 6, 2013.
Memories & Condolences
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3 entries
August 15, 2013
I remember Fred as a brilliant scientist and an excellent, sincere teacher. Condolences to his family.
Steohen Olsen
July 9, 2013
From the first time I met you over 40 years ago, you have always been a great inspiration to me... thank you Fred!
Bob Flora
July 6, 2013
So sorry for your loss. My prayers to the family. May you draw close to God as this time.
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