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  • "Nancy: Yvette and I and the Rutgers Class of 1945 offer our..."
  • "To Nancy, Ken, Phil and family -- David told me of Hank's..."
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BARTELS--Henry Edwin.

Henry "Hank" Edwin Bartels, died of natural causes on January 16, 2015 in North Branford, Connecticut. He was 92 and a prominent philanthropist in New Haven, Connecticut. Hank was born in Westfield, New Jersey on July 18, 1922. The son of Henry Bartels and Elizabeth Gilbert Bartels, Hank grew up in nearby Cranford, New Jersey. A 1940 graduate of Cranford High School, Hank worked for a year in a Western Electric factory to earn money for college tuition. Hank enrolled at Rutgers University in 1941, the first person in his family to attend university. At Rutgers Hank studied mechanical engineering, rowed crew, and was a member of Chi Psi fraternity, where he washed dishes and waited tables to cover his room and board. In 1943 Hank enlisted in the United States Navy and became a Naval Aviator. Discharged from the Navy as an Ensign in December 1945, in 1946 Hank enrolled at Cornell University on the G.I. Bill, where he studied industrial engineering. At Cornell Hank again was a member of Chi Psi, where again he washed dishes; he rowed Varsity 150-pound crew, was a strong student and was a member of numerous honorary societies. Hank graduated from Cornell in 1948. Hank's career was in manufacturing, first at the Lincoln Electric Company in Cleveland, Ohio, then Safety Car Heating and Lighting Company in Hamden, Connecticut, then Xerox Corporation in Rochester, New York, and finally Insilco Corporation in Meriden, Connecticut, from which he retired in 1984 as President of Insilco subsidiary MRM Industries. Volunteer work and philanthropy formed the core of Hank's life, particularly in his later years. Hank served as Scoutmaster of Boy Scout troops both in the New Haven, Connecticut and Rochester, New York areas (Hank had earned the Eagle Scout rank as a young man), and later he chaired the board of directors of Gaylord Hospital in Wallingford, Connecticut and served as President of the New Haven branch of Junior Achievement. His philanthropic interests were numerous and varied, but focused in particular upon education. Hank often gave in the names of others whom he wished to honor. Cornell University, where he was a Presidential Councillor, Rutgers University, the University of New Haven, where he served on the Board of Governors for nearly three decades and from which he received an honorary doctorate, Quinnipiac University, from which he also received an honorary doctorate, the Yale University Art Gallery, the Yale Center for British Art, Chi Psi fraternity, and Historic Deerfield, where Hank served as a Trustee for many years and at his death was an Honorary Trustee, all benefited from Hank's generosity both with his time and with his resources. Hank also was devoted to his New Haven community; Gaylord Hospital, the New Haven-area Boy Scouts of America, Amistad Academy, St. Martin de Porres Academy, the New Haven Symphony, Concepts for Adaptive Learning, Planned Parenthood, and the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven all have been helped financially and otherwise by Hank. Hank's favorite hobby was windsurfing, which he pursued vigorously until his 85th year on lakes in Connecticut and Florida, and on the ocean in Rhode Island, on Cape Cod and in the British Virgin Islands. Hank is survived by his beloved wife of 66 years, Nancy, a Cornell classmate whom Hank met in a course on Beethoven's symphonies, the one course he was able to take outside the College of Engineering during his time at Cornell. Hank also is survived by his two sons Philip and Kenneth, both of Greenwich, Connecticut, their wives Susan Stappers Bartels and Jane Frances Condon, and four grandchildren--Christopher (and his wife Minsung) and Katherine, and McDonald and Todd. Hank's sister Charlotte predeceased him. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Hank's memory can be made to the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, 70 Audubon Street, New Haven, CT 06510; www.cfgnh.org A Celebration of the Life of Hank Bartels will take place at 4:00pm on Thursday, February 26, 2015 at the New Haven Lawn Club, 193 Whitney Avenue in New Haven.

Published in The New York Times on Jan. 27, 2015
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