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Leonard Sudenfield, former member of CMSE staff, 83

Leonard Sudenfield, who worked at MIT for nearly half a century, died April 25 after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease. He was 83.

Sudenfield, who was born and raised in the Boston area, served in the U.S. Army during World War II, earning a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. He began working at MIT in 1948 as a laboratory assistant in the Center for Materials Science and Engineering and went on to hold other titles including metallurgical project technician and engineering assistant.

He also served as an instructor, one of the few persons to do so at the Institute without a college degree, according to his wife, Dorothy (Kushinsky) Sudenfield. Due to his skills on the electron microscope, he was a member of the MIT team that in the 1970s worked to determine why the windows were popping out of the newly built John Hancock Tower in Boston, his wife said. He left MIT in 1995.

He is survived by his wife, sons Paul Sudenfield of Wollaston, Mass., and John Sudenfield of Framingham, Mass.; and daughter Marjorie McCabe, also of Wollaston. A service was held in April. Donations may be made to the Alzheimer's Association, 311 Arsenal St., Watertown, MA 02472,

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on June 10, 2009 (download PDF).

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