Roland H. Wetzel, age 93, died peacefully at home on July 20, 2016 after a slow decline following surgery. He was born April 29, 1923 in Hartford, Wisconsin, to William Wetzel and Bertha (Uber) Wetzel. He grew up in Hartford and moved to Milwaukee where he graduated from Shorewood High School, where he met his wife of 71 years, Muriel E. Auler. After two years attending the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee, he enlisted in the Navy V-12 program, which allowed him to complete his B.S. at U. Wisconsin, Madison. Upon graduating he went to Midshipmen’s School at Columbia University and was commissioned Ensign.
The Navy sent him to various specialized training schools then assigned him to the newly constructed heavy cruiser USS Oregon City. He married Muriel June 13, 1945 and she accompanied him to various state-side locations until he went aboard ship. He was honorably discharged in June 1946 and returned to U. Wisconsin and earned a PhD in Chemical Engineering under the GI Bill. After graduating in August 1951 he took employment at DuPont Company in Wilmington, DE, where he remained until retirement.
He is the holder of several U.S. patents. His work involved product and process development on white and colored pigments, high purity titanium, zirconium, and niobium metals, semi-conductor silicon, mineral processing, and environmental concerns related to these. He retired in June 1978.
He was an active member of Avondale Presbyterian Church, where he served as an Elder. He was an Election Judge and a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the American Chemical Society, DeMolay, Masons, the National Congress of Parents and Teachers, and four professional and social fraternities (Theta Chi, Tau Beta Pi, Sigma Xi, and Phi Lambda Upsilon).
Since retiring he has pursued interests in family, home, church, travel, gardening, fishing, and woodworking. He lived in Landenberg, PA from 1958 until 2004 when he and Muriel moved to Ware Presbyterian Village in Oxford, PA.
He is survived by his wife Muriel, 93, son Peter, 67 and five grandchildren, Adrian, Riki, Janel, Brandon and Ellen. His younger son James preceded him in death in February, 2015.
You are invited to visit with Rolandâ€™s family and friends from 6-8 PM Wednesday July 27, 2016 at the Foulk & Grieco Funeral Home Inc. (610-869-2685) 200 Rose Hill Rd. West Grove, PA 19390. Interment will be held privately at New London Presbyterian Cemetery.
A Memorial Service celebrating his life will be held 11AM Saturday July 30, 2016 at Avondale Presbyterian Church 420 Pennsylvania Ave (Route 41) Avondale, PA 19311. In lieu of flowers, a donation in memory of Roland may be sent to the Building Fund, Avondale Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 446, Avondale, PA 19311.
To view his online tribute and to share a memory with his family, please visit www.griecocares.com
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VisitationJuly 27, 2016 6-8PM Foulk & Grieco Funeral Home
200 Rose Hill Rd.
West Grove, PA 19390
Memorial ServiceJuly 30, 2016 11AM Avondale Presbyterian Church
420 Pennsylvania Ave
Avondale, PA 19311
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