George Freedman Remembrance on June 11th
Remembering Wayland’s Leonardo da Vinci
There was a remembrance and celebration of the life of George Freedman on June 11th at 7:30 pm at the home of friends in Wayland. Mr. Freedman died at the Briarwood in Needham on March 21st.
In many ways, George was Wayland’s very own Leonardo da Vinci, a Renaissance man and inventor with over 25 patents, the Director of Raytheon’s New Product Center, an author of five published books including two mysteries, a lover of the arts and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and a veteran of the Pacific campaign in WWII. Attending Revere High School and MIT, George had an inventive mind with a passion for creating new products and inventions.
As a long time senior executive at Raytheon, George was centrally involved in the company’s path breaking work in semiconductors, microwave technology, metallurgical and heat transfer technologies. Under his leadership, the New Product Center developed over 50 new products, five of which won national “New Product of the Year” awards, including the newly invented microwave oven. After his retirement from Raytheon he and three colleagues founded Invent Resources, a group which invented solutions, patents and approaches for major companies across the US. For example, Mr. Freedman was one of the principal inventors of the XLerator hand dryer for the Excel Company, a product that is now the leading hand dryer in the country.
George was a writer and an author all of his life. Among his books, he received professional acclaim for The Pursuit of Innovation – Managing the People and Processes that Turn New Ideas into Profits. Later in life, he turned to mystery novels, and wrote Eldernapped and several years later, Striking Terror, engaging “Harry and Naomi Levine Mysteries.” The plots included a clever Miss Marple-type character, Naomi, who resembled his beloved wife, Ruth, assisted by the less resourceful but faithful husband, Harry, loosely based on George.
MIT and George’s experience in WWII were important parts of his life. George was a member of the MIT class of 1943, and soon after his graduation he joined the Navy where he became a radio operator on USS LST 1026, a ship that delivered troops, ammunition, heavy equipment and supplies all over the Pacific theatre of war. Mr. Freedman remained active and in touch with both his MIT classmates and his LST shipmates through much of his life, attending many reunions, and his book Striking Terror was based in part on his LST experience.
Family was always central to George, and his wife Ruth was at the center of his universe. Married for more than 65 years, they were the devoted parents of Judy and Debby, who predeceased both of them. George and Ruth bravely continued after their deaths until Ruth left her dear George in 2010. They are survived by their sons-in-law, George Schwartz and Jim Naveira, granddaughter Sarah Schwartz and her husband Andrew Errico, as well as great grandson, Jude Errico.
For details on the location of the June 11th remembrance, please contact Ellen Greenfeld at 508 358-5887 or Rob Pratt at 508 358-0138.