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Swan Funeral Home
1224 Boston Post Road
Old Saybrook, CT

BAKEWELL, Henry P. Jr.

Henry Palmer Bakewell, Jr., noted nautical engineer, expert sailor, train enthusiast and devoted father, died December 21, 2013, at Yale-New Haven Hospital after a sudden and brief illness. He was 75 and lived in Old Saybrook, CT. Mr. Bakewell was born May 25, 1937 in West Hartford, CT, the son of Henry Palmer Bakewell and Hester Adams Bakewell. He graduated from Groton School in 1955, from Yale University with a BA degree in Mathematics in 1959 and an MS degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1961, and from the Pennsylvania State University with a PhD in Aeronautical Engineering in 1966. He joined the U.S. Navy Underwater Sound Laboratory in 1961, where he conducted studies of turbulent flow noise. Subsequently his career included responsibility for several submarine programs to characterize and reduce hull array self-noise, initiation of thinline towed array efforts and development of wavenumber analysis techniques for sonar self-noise. He was a nationally and internationally recognized expert in towed and hulled array hydroacoustics, and for his achievements was recognized with the Navy Superior Civilian Service Award. Mr. Bakewell retired in 1996 as the Head of the Towed Arrays Division of Naval Underseas Weapons Center in New London, CT. Known by his friends for his gentle kindness and soft-spoken wit, Mr. Bakewell was accomplished in numerous pursuits and hobbies. An expert sailor, he loved being on the water, owning and sailing a variety of boats, including the sloop Sixpence and most recently his Cape Dory Born Free. In 1977, he and his crew placed first in their division in the Marion Bermuda Race. He was a longtime member and former president of the Dauntless Club in Essex, CT, as well as founder and ardent supporter of the North Cove Yacht Club in Old Saybrook, CT. Mr. Bakewell had a lifelong passion for trains and railroad history. In addition to delighting his children and grandchildren with intricate model train layouts at home, he served as both Train Conductor and Train Master for the Valley Railroad Company, home of the Essex Steam Train, in Essex, CT. As Train Master, he developed the training program that taught the essentials to future brakeman and flagman while also imparting his wisdom and energy as a mentor. Mr. Bakewell was devoted to Groton School, and was an active alumnus, including recently participating on a panel of distinguished Groton alumni for a discussion of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) initiatives with alumni and current students. The last year of his life was filled with great joy. In May 2012, he celebrated his 75th birthday with a planked shad dinner surrounded by family at the Dauntless Club. Accompanied by his loving companion of 13 years, Carolyn Barter, he sailed and traveled extensively throughout the year, including sails to New London for the Tall Ships Festival and to Mystic Seaport as part of the Labor Day North Cove Yacht Club cruise, along with a travel excursion to St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. In addition to his extensive Valley Railroad commitments, he also found time to volunteer at Mystic Seaport, repairing and maintaining their small craft fleet. Most recently, on December 1, he hosted family and friends in the Essex Steam Train's parlor car for an evening ride on the "North Pole Express". His family described a festive atmosphere, replete with stories and carols, as he showed off his family to admiring Valley Railroad colleagues. For a quiet, thoughtful man, reserved in his emotions, he was clearly swelled with pride and having a wonderful time amidst the warmth of family and friends. Mr. Bakewell was predeceased by his wife, Elsie-Ives Goodrich Bakewell, as well as a sister, Hester (Sandy) Bakewell. He is survived by a brother, Charles Bakewell of Earlysville, VA; a sister, Sarah Haines of Waterbury, CT; his companion, Carolyn Barter of Old Saybrook, CT; four daughters, Nancy Roberts of Gales Ferry, CT, Margaret Eldredge of Old Saybrook, CT, Lucy Bakewell-Barnes of Centerbrook, CT and Ann Woodward of Bedford Corners, NY; four son-in-laws; six grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.
The memorial service will be on Saturday, Jan. 26 at 11:30 a.m. at St. Ann's Episcopal Church, 82 Shore Road in Old Lyme, CT. The family has requested that, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made to: Groton School, P.O. Box 991, Groton, MA 01450; Valley Railroad Company, P.O. Box 452, Essex, CT 06426; or North Cove Yacht Club Junior Sailing Program, P.O. Box 298, Old Saybrook, CT 06475. Arrangements are with Swan Funeral Home, 1224 Boston Post Road, Old Saybrook, CT.

Published by Hartford Courant on Jan. 13, 2013.
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9 Entries
Henry was a great guy yo work for, as I did for years at NUWC (the Sound Lab) in the Towed Arrays Division. He was a very understanding and dedicated boss, who enjoys all aspects of his job, administrative and technical. He put everyone around him at ease.
God Bless his family and friends who mourn his passing and give us all grace.
Doug Wilson
January 26, 2013
Henry was a friend and I worked with him for many years at "The Sound Lab" where he was an outstanding leader and technical expert. He was a major contributor to the superior technology of the U.S. Submarine force in passive sonar. My deep sympathy to his family. I will not be able to attend the memorial service on Jan. 26 as I will be out of town.
Howard Schloemer
January 20, 2013
On behalf of the entire Kingswood Oxford School community, we offer our deepest sympathy on the passing of Henry.

As a cherished member of the class of 1954, Henry will always be a part of our school family, and we mourn his death along with those who loved him.

Please know that we'll keep the family in our thoughts in the days and weeks to come. We are very sorry for your loss, but join you in celebrating the life of a wonderful man.

- Nicole Kimball, Dir. of Alumni and Constituent Relations, Kingswood Oxford School, West Hartford, CT
Nicole Kimball
January 18, 2013
Nancy and family,
I am so very sorry for your loss. Though I never met your Dad, I now understand, after reading about him and his full life, why you were very proud to be his daughter.
May the many special memories of your Dad that you hold in your heart help you during these difficult days.
God bless.
Karen Coughlin and Barbara
January 16, 2013
Maggie and Doug, So sad to hear of your loss. Comfort yourselves in all the fond memories. May God bless you at this difficult time. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Paul Mark & Mary
January 15, 2013
I had the wonderful opportunity to work with Henry at the "Sound Lab" for many years. He was one of those few guys who knew his way around the technology but also understood the ways of Washington and that combination kept our funding coming into Crystal Avenue. I also loved to discuss sailing with him on many occasions . He was one of the pillars of the towed array community who will be sorely missed. I send my sympathy to his family.
Todd Whitaker
January 14, 2013
I worked with Henry at Mystic Seaport - he was such a pleasure to work with and I always left conversations with him with a smile. He was an extraordinary man and will be missed. My thoughts and prayers are with Henry's family during this time.
Tia D'Alessandro
January 14, 2013
Dear Mrs. Roberts and Family,
Our thoughts and prayers go out to you upon the passing of your father. He must have been a wonderful gentleman and we only wish that we had the opportunity to meet him. May your many happy memories of your father bring you comfort as you continue on your earthly journey.

Mary & Sam Porter-Price
January 14, 2013
I serviced "Born Free"s engine for Henry and her previous owners. It was always a pleasure to hear his travel and sailing stories. I am happy to have met him.
Brian McDonnell
January 13, 2013
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