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John Lyman


1932 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
John Lyman Obituary
John T. Lyman

May 25, 1932 - May 30 2018

John Tompkins Lyman, Ph.D., born on May 25, 1932 in Berkeley, California, to Laura and Elwood Lyman MD, passed away at age 86 on May 30, 2018 in Walnut Creek, California. He graduated from University of California Berkeley with a bachelor's degree in zoology and another in physics. John served in the Army Reserve as a medic. He went on to earn his Ph.D. in Biophysics from Cal. He was a senior scientist at Lawrence Berkeley Lab who researched the biological effects of ionizing radiation. His widely used analysis and method of optimization radiation treatment became known as the "Lyman Model". He is survived by his girlfriend Kathy French, (whom he credits with prolonging his life), his first wife, JoAnne Frudden, sons Robert Lyman, (daughter in law Laura Lyman), Geoffrey Lyman, (daughter in law Paige Whitworth) and daughter, Carolyn Phillips; brothers, Peter Lyman and Richard Lyman; sister, Alice Westbie; grandchildren, Eric Lyman, Christopher Lyman, Amelia Phillips, Maggie Phillips, and Natalie Phillips. In 1980 John married Dr. Kay H. Woodruff, (deceased 2016). They shared 36 years of adventures. Together they biked through much of the United States, trekked through the Himalayas, (with Tensing Norgay as their guide), hiked in the Swiss Alps and traveled extensively. An early backpacker, he instilled the love of the outdoors in his children and the importance of leaving a minimal carbon footprint. He was not the type who just talked the talk, he was one who walked the walk, doing so with a style that often was ahead of the times. The list of his interests is long and varied: Nordic skiing, tennis, marathon runner, windsurfer, organic vegetable gardener, beekeeper, maker of bread, ice cream and liqueurs. John enjoyed wine tasting and did so with a group of great friends. He will be missed terribly. Please join us in the celebration of his life Saturday, June 23, 5:30PM at Postino Restaurant, 3565 Mount Diablo Blvd, Lafayette, CA.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from June 16 to June 18, 2018
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