Eric C. Hansen passed away on the evening of March 24, 2012, at home in Medford, Ore., with his wife at his side. He was 82 years old.
Eric Clement Winther Hansen was born in Copenhagen, Denmark, on November 7, 1929, to Nellie Winther Hansen and Hans I. Hansen. The family moved to the United States in 1930, when Eric was less than a year old. They lived in several cities in the Midwest while Eric's father worked as an engineer.
Eric was in communications in the Air Force during the Korean War, and served in Okinawa, Korea and Japan. After returning to the U.S., he attended college, and received a bachelors degree in chemical engineering from Iowa State College and a masters degree in physics from MIT. Later in life he received a doctorate in nuclear physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, N.Y.
Eric worked as an engineer and engineering manager for the General Electric Company for 35 years, first at the Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory in Schenectady, N.Y., then at the Nuclear Power Division in San Jose, Calif. While living in Schenectady, Eric taught evening mathematics classes at Union College.
Eric's grandfather, Dr. J.M.T. Winther, was a Lutheran missionary in Japan, beginning in the late 1800s. Eric taught Sunday School classes in many Lutheran churches over the years. Moving to the Rogue Valley in 2004, Eric first attended Zion Lutheran and, later, Ascension Lutheran Church.
During his life Eric enjoyed playing tennis and squash, skiing, golfing, and was an expert at many games, including bridge, poker, and backgammon. He was an ACBL Life Master at bridge, and gave bridge lessons to many friends.
Eric moved to the Rogue Valley in 2004, with his wife, Lynda, after her retirement from IBM. After coming to the Valley, Eric continued his card playing and golfing, and gave bridge lessons. He and his wife delivered meals for Food and Friends for several years, where he was known for giving generous gifts of chocolates to the volunteers.
Eric is survived by his wife of 38 years, Lynda; three children from a previous marriage, Kris Suzanne Crandall, of Saratoga, N.Y., Mark Hansen, of Philadelphia, Pa., and Peter Hansen, of Sunnyvale, Calif; and five grandchildren.
Contributions in Eric's memory may be made to Lutheran World Relief, 700 Light Street, Baltimore, MD 21230.
No service has been planned at this time.