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Subject: A death

A death

From: Debra Hess Norris <dhnorris>
Date: Thursday, January 6, 2000
Don Boswell Heller

Don Boswell Heller passed away on November 23, 1999 at home.  At an
apprentice silversmith since the age of 12, Don studied under his
father and ran the Heller Silverplating Co. until 1959. In 1974, Don
joined Winterthur as an objects conservator and the
Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation as an
adjunct professor responsible for education and training in metals
conservation.  Don was a Fellow of the American Institute for
Conservation. He retired from Winterthur in 1992. He is survived by
his beloved wife, Linda, and three sons, Christian of Chicago, Mark
of Newark, and Paul of Wilmington.

Don taught in our graduate Program for 19 years.  His highly
organized and amazing demonstrations focused on the fabrication
history, deterioration, stabilization, restoration, and care of
metal artifacts. His courses were complete, thorough, well
organized, jam packed, and  covered materials that were entirely new
to many. Students  and faculty remember that it took him three days
to set up and three days to take down his display of the entire
world history of metalworking techniques.   He taught us about the
vulnerabilities of metals and he provided simple and complex
strategies for their long-term care. He  waged a vigilant and
successful campaign for the use of white gloves and developed and
promoted the use of metal lacquers as needed.  Don's infectious
enthusiasm for  his subject matter had a profound effect on all of
his students.  He was a very demanding teacher who inspired his
students to perform at their highest level--as they struggled to
planish, burnish, sand cast, solder. and polish the damaged
"projects" (typically  corroded and dropped from what looked like a
height of 100 feet) that he provided.

In her eulogy, Dr. Joyce Hill Stoner reminded us, "Don Heller, we
see you in every silver bowl, in every white glove, and you are in
the minds and hearts of 19 years of have touched the
future because you taught."  Our Program and the conservation field
in general have benefited immensely from Don Heller's extraordinary
experience, skill, and commitment to the education and training of
future professionals. We are grateful for his his concern and
generosity and we will all miss him greatly.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Don Heller Memorial Fund,
c/o Debbie Hess Norris, Conservation, Winterthur DE 19735
(where funds will be used for student support) or to Delaware
Hospice at 3515 Silverside Road, Wilmington, DE 19810.

                  Conservation DistList Instance 13:39
                 Distributed: Monday, January 10, 2000
                       Message Id: cdl-13-39-001
Received on Thursday, 6 January, 2000

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