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In memoriam: May 2020

In memoriam: May 2020

[photo of stained-glass windows in Grant Hall]

In memoriam

Samuel Ludwin, Professor Emeritus (Pathology), died Jan. 21.

David Atherton, Professor Emeritus (Physics and Computer Engineering), died March 18.

[photo of David Atherton]David Lawrence Atherton, Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Emeritus Professor of Physics and Computer Engineering at Queen’s University, engineer and co-founder of the Pressure Pipe Inspection Company passed away peacefully on March 18, 2020, at his home, Silverstone Farm.

David is survived by Joanna (Banham), his beloved wife and companion of 58 years, and his two much-loved daughters Tamsin, NSc'90 (Ann-Marie) and Heather, Sc'92 (Jeff). He will be missed as the cherished Grandad of Caden, Serena, and Jude. David is survived by brothers Richard (Elaine) in Derbyshire, U.K. and Charles (Anne) in Athens, Greece as well as many exceptional graduates of whom he was exceedingly proud.

David was born in Chelsea, England in 1935. He was a major scholar and exhibitioner at Clare College, Cambridge. He came to Canada in 1959 joining Ferranti-Packard Electric, Toronto, where he helped build the first Canadian computers and then established research in practical applications of superconductivity. He founded and led the Canadian Maglev project which he brought to Queen’s in 1971 where he helped foster the growth of the Engineering Physics program. He established the Applied Magnetics Group and became an international expert of magnetic inspection of oil and gas pipelines and subsequently large water supply lines, and in 1997 co-founded the Pressure Pipe Inspection Company.

David was also a keen photographer and mountaineer, climbing in Iceland, Greenland, Alaska, Baffin Island, and Peru. He made several notable first and second mountain climbing ascents and served as Chairman of the Toronto section of the Alpine Club of Canada.

David found great joy in his life at Silverstone Farm, the farm on Sydenham Lake north of Kingston, Ontario that he and Joanna restored. There they built up a herd of Murray Grey beef cattle and created award-winning gardens, with spring bulbs being David’s speciality.

In keeping with David’s wishes there will be private family gatherings at Silverstone Farm and in Derbyshire, U.K., two of his favourite places. If desired, donations in David’s memory to the University Hospital Kingston Foundation or Nature Conservancy Canada would be gratefully received.

To celebrate David, the family will hold an Open Garden Day at Silverstone Farm during the time of the daffodils in the spring of 2021 for the enjoyment of all that was closest to David’s heart. Details of this event will be made available this time next year.

“To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” ~ Thomas Campbell


Julio Arboleda-Florez, Professor Emeritus and former department head (Psychiatry), died March 30.

Dr. Arboleda-Flórez was an internationally known and respected scholar, having served in a number of senior roles and receiving numerous awards and recognitions from medical and scientific societies around the globe, including the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the École Internationale de Langue et Civilization Françaises (Paris), the Canadian Psychiatric Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the World Psychiatric Association (WPA).

He published extensively on mental health services, public mental health, mental health ethics, forensic psychiatry, and psychiatric epidemiology.

A family obituary is available online.


Suning Wang, Professor (Chemistry), died April 27 after a long illness. She was 61.

Dr. Wang arrived at Queen's in 1996 after starting her teaching career at the University of Windsor. Born in Nanjing, China she earned a BSc from Jilin University and a PhD from Yale University. She also completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Texas A&M University.

Dr. Wang was well-known and highly respected within the international chemistry community as well as at Queen's. She was included in the first group of Distinguished University Professor recipients in 2019. Throughout her career she received numerous major awards including a Killam Research Fellowship (2012-14) from the Canada Council for the Arts.

In 2015 she was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. She was also a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry and a fellow of the Chemical Institute of Canada.

Dr. Wang's research focused on the development of new organometallic chemistry and luminescent materials chemistry. Her research interests also included the work on organic photovoltaics and nanoparticles, stimuli-responsive materials as well as OLEDs. Dr. Wang and her group developed a simple method of producing graphene-like lattice through light exposure, which may contribute to a huge field of future use.

During her career she co-authored more than 300 publications.

Dr. Wang also excelled in her work with students. In 2018, she was named the inaugural winner of the Canadian Association for Graduate Studies (CAGS) Award for Outstanding Graduate Mentorship. During her career she supervised more than 70 graduate students, including 34 PhD students, many of whom are already well-known scientists and hold faculty positions.


If you have memories of these professors you would like to share, please email review@queensu.ca.

[cover image of the Queen's Alumni Review issue 2, 2020 featuring Ali Velshi, Artsci'94]