Ronald Charles Clarke

Ronald Charles Clarke (BS Mech Egr ’59) died October 16, 2011. He was born January 8, 1937, in Detroit, Mich., to Ivan and Harriet Clarke.

Clarke graduated from Farmington (Mich.) High School where he met the love of his life, Nancy. They were married in 1957 while both were attending MSU. After graduation from MSU, the pair drove across the country in a classic red and white Chevrolet to San Diego, Calif., to begin their careers. Clarke started in the aerospace industry at General Dynamics, and eventually transitioned to Solar Engineering (now Solar Turbines Inc.).

He and his family moved to Phoenix, Ariz., in 1969, where he fulfilled his life-long dream of wearing a cowboy hat and boots to work. He worked as a project engineer for AirResearch, which is now Honeywell, working on projects that included gas turbine engines.

He served at Desert Hills Presbyterian Church in Scottsdale, Ariz., in many capacities, helping to design the church, and being a strong advocate of leaving the large boulder that now forms part of the church exactly where it was.

After retiring from Honeywell in 1997, he served the town of Carefree, Ariz., from 2002 - 2011 on the Planning and Zoning Commission, advocating for the building of the fire station, helping to monitor the town water supply, speaking up for solar energy, and promoting the playground at the Town Center.

Clarke’s parents, sister, and twin brother preceded him in death. He is survived by his wife Nancy; daughter Sharon Clarke of Seattle, Wash.; son Steve (Caryn) of Woodbine, Md.; son Tim (Heather) of San Diego, Calif.; and 10 grandchildren.