Obituary : Shelton Bank
Shelton Bank, 76, of Oak Lane in West Tisbury, died suddenly on January 12 while visiting his children in Oakland, Calif. Shelton and his wife of 51 years, Janet, have lived in West Tisbury since 1991, moving here from the Albany, N.Y. area.
Shelton was active in town affairs, served on the Library Board, was Chairman of the Town Energy Committee, was the Town Representative for Cape Cod Compact, a member of the Open Space Committee, a member of the Cultural Council, and volunteered as a computer instructor at the Up-Island Council on Aging (Howes House).
Shelton Bank was born in the Bronx, N.Y., on January 28, 1932. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from Brooklyn College and then served two years in the U.S. Army doing weather research in Arizona. His Ph.D., in chemistry, was from Purdue University, where he studied under the Nobel Prize winner Dr. Herbert C. Brown, and then subsequently served as a post-doctoral research assistant with Dr. Paul Bartlett at Harvard University. In 1961, he joined the Esso Research and Engineering Company (now Exxon-Mobil) where he became a project leader in 1964.
Shelton was Professor Emeritus of the State University of New York at Albany where he had taught since 1966. His research interests covered a range that includes solution and solid state NMR spectroscopy of metal ions, clays, molecular and macromolecular complexes, neurotoxins, metabolic and fermentation pathways, environmental pollutants and organic reaction mechanisms. He published 84 papers and was awarded two patents.
During that time, he served as President of the Chemical Education Division of the American Chemical Society and received the State University of New York Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching. Shelton was the mentor to a number of undergraduate and graduate students who went on to become chemistry professors themselves. In 1995, he and Janet published a book for students called "A Thousand and One Ways to Pass Organic Chemistry," and named their sailboat "1001."
After his retirement in 1997, Shelton enjoyed an active life in West Tisbury, swimming, cycling, sailing, and walking the beaches. He was surrounded by a large community of friends with whom he shared his love of life and ideas. Shelton was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather. He is survived by his son, Todd; daughter Brigeda and her partner Katie Fox; two grandchildren, Madeline and Jacob; by his brother and sister-in-law, Alex and Rosalind Bank; and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service to honor and celebrate Shelton's life is being planned for June.
Donations in Shelton's memory may be made to The Vineyard Energy Project, P.O. Box 1077, West Tisbury, MA 02575.