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This is the seventh volume in the series of Memorial Tributes compiled by the National Academy of Engineering as a personal remembrance of the lives and outstanding achievements of its members and international members. These volumes are intended to stand as an enduring record of the many contributions of engineers and engineering to the benefit of humankind. In most cases, the authors of the tributes are contemporaries or colleagues who had personal knowledge of the interests and the engineering accomplishments of the deceased.
BY WALLACE L. CHADWICK
RICHARD HENRY TATLOW III, renowned professional civil and mechanical engineer, entrepreneur, statesman for his profession, designer of retail and commercial complexes for major enterprises, and director of industrial facilities for the U.S. Army during World War II, died at age eighty-seven, at his home in Scarsdale, New York, on July 1, 1993.
Mr. Tatlow was born May 27, 1906, in Denver, Colorado. He graduated from the University of Colorado in 1927 with a B.S. degree in civil engineering. He was a member of Tau Beta Pi and Sigma Tau and was awarded the George Norlin Award, the highest honor awardable to an alumnus of the university. He received a master's degree in 1933.
Mr. Tatlow's first job was for two years as a junior engineer with the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads, following which he became a partner of Harrington and Cortelyou, consulting engineers of Kansas City, working there until 1940. In 1941 he was commissioned lieutenant colonel, then colonel, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, general staff. In 1946 he became a member of the board of directors and president, then chairman of the board of Abbott, Merkt and Company, Inc.
Mr. Tatlow was the author of numerous articles on diverse technical subjects such as movable bridges, materials handling, storage and distribution of merchandise, and shopping centers. He was a perennial representative locally, nationally, and internationally of significant professional, quasi-governmental, and government organizations and of their committees. In 1960 he became president of the American Institute of Consulting Engineers. In 1968 he was elected president of the American Society of Civil Engineers. He served as trustee of the United Engineering Center for many years.
Mr. Tatlow was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 1967. He served on the National Academy of Sciences' Super Sonic Transport-Sonic Boom Committee at the request of President Lyndon B. Johnson and on the New York City Science and Technology Advisory Board by appointment of Mayor John V. Lindsay. Mr. Tatlow was chairman of the National Academy of Sciences' Division of Engineering and Industrial Research, Building Research Advisory Board. His breadth of interest extended to the animal world when he served as a director of the Animal Medical Center in New York City. He was a member of the famed Cosmos Club of Washington, D.C., and of the Union League Club of New York.
In 1960 Mr. Tatlow exercised his wide range of high technical interest when he became one of the founders of the NUS Corporation, a firm specializing in nuclear engineering, with side interests in biological and underwater systems, air and water pollution, systems analysis, and business management.
Mr. Tatlow is survived by his wife of sixty-one years, Annette Hart Tatlow; a son, Richard Henry Tatlow IV of Bronxville, New York; a daughter, Beedy Tatlow Ritchie of Los Angeles, California; a sister, Laurene Tatlow Gandy of Seattle, Washington; and five grandchildren.
Mr. Tatlow was a friendly man of much charm. His wide interests are also shown by his membership in the Chevy Chase Club of Washington, D.C.; the Fox Meadow Club of Scarsdale, New York; Shenorock Shore Club of Rye, New York; Newcomen Society of North America; and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers of which he was a fellow.
The character of the man is well described by his son, who is recorded to have said, "My father was a kind, gentle, and caring man—a true gentleman of the old school."