Thomas A. Sandford

Oct. 6, 2016

Thomas A. Sandford (BS MECH EGR ’59), Albuquerque, N.M., died Sept. 24, 2016, after an extended fight with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis. He was 79.

He was born and raised on a farm near Milford, Mich., and his early education took place in a one-room schoolhouse. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s degree in applied mechanics from Michigan State University. 

He worked his entire professional career, beginning in 1960, as an engineer and manager at the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) in the nuclear weapons and non-proliferation programs. Prior to retiring from LANL in July 1996, he was the project leader of the Proliferation Information Network System (PINS). This system was used in the U.S. nuclear nonproliferation export control program, and he assisted in the transfer of this technology to staff at the Kerchatov Institute, Moscow, Russia. In total, he had over 38 years of service with the laboratory.

He is survived by his first wife of 24 years, Marilyn Stoops; and their five children, Scott (Betsy), Peter (Kristine), Michael (Lori), Dawn, and Brian (Shiela) Sandford. He is also survived by the children of his second wife of 33 years, Ruth Demuth (deceased), Katherine (Mark Johnson) Demuth, Kimberly (Fred) Glick, Mary (Anthony) Sandoval, and Hal (Monette) Demuth II. At the time of his death, he was married to his third wife, Niña Johnson. He is also survived by his stepdaughter, Kellan Mahoney (Alfred) Chavez. Combined, he played the role of grandfather to 30+ grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

There will be a memorial service in Los Alamos in January 2017. In lieu of flowers, consider donations to the Los Alamos Historical Society, and the Title 1 Homeless Project for Albuquerque Public Schools,

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