Truman Ted S. Light

Passed away on March 26, 2013

Truman S. “Ted” Light of Newton, formerly of Lexington on Tuesday, March 26, 2013. Beloved husband of Arlene (Wick) and the late Reeva (Snyder). Devoted father of Edward N. Light & his wife Mary, Stuart L. Licht & his wife Bregt, and Joel M. Light. Cherished grandfather of Dov, Jacob, Ariel, Gadi, Reeva, Siobhan, and Alana, and great-grandfather of Hannah and David. Dear brother of Henrietta Stolzman. Graveside services at Mishkan Tefila Memorial Park, 2619 Centre Street, West Roxbury on Friday, March 29 at 11:00AM. In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to American Chemical Society, 1155 Sixteenth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036 or to the Alzheimer’s Association, 480 Pleasant Street, Watertown, MA 02472.

Obituary Born in December 1922, the son of immigrants Joseph and Lillian, Licht, he went on to attend Harvard (Class of 1944) and later continued his studies in analytical chemistry at the University of Minnesota (M.S. 1949), and completed his doctorate at the University of Rome (1960). Truman Licht was a Communications Officer in the U.S. Navy from 1943 to 1946, and continued in the US Navy Reserve from 1946-1964, retiring as a Lieutenant Commander. In 1946 he married Reeva Snyder, and they raised their three sons Edward, Stuart and Joel; born in 1950, 1954 and 1958. Reeva succumbed to cancer in the late 1970's, but they had had many happy adventures together living in the Boston area, Rome and Lexington MA. From 1949 to 1959 Prof. Truman Licht served on the faculty of chemistry at Boston College, and returned as an Adjunct faculty in 1987. In 1960 he completed his doctoral studies, Americanized the family name to Light, and turned to industry first as a Senior Scientist at AVCO and then as a Principal Research Scientist at Foxboro. His many scientific accomplishments include contributions to NASA's early heat shields for reentry of manned capsules and contributions to water chemistry including patents for electrodes to measure fluoride concentration and the physical chemistry of ultrapure water. Truman Light retired from Foxboro in 1988.

During his retirement years, Truman enjoyed many adventures with his wife, Arlene Wick Light, which included visits to Israel, Spain, Holland and also to Australia where Truman was the captain of a house boat returning to his love for the sea and boats. Truman Light was Chairman of the Northeastern Section of American Chemical Society in 1978, and served on many ACS committees. Truman and Arlene together received the 2002 Henry Hill award for their devoted service to the American Chemical Society.

On March 26 Truman Light lost a long term battle with Alzheimer's. Despite the loss of his short term memory, he retained his long term memory, keen deductive skills, and warm smile throughout. Truman Light will be missed by his wife, sister, sons, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.


  • Graveside Service Friday, March 29, 2013

Truman Ted S. Light

have a memory or condolence to add?


receive updates when new memories are posted


April 1, 2013

Ted was a wonderful man and sadly missed by all his friends and relatives. He was one of the smartest men I knew and a great mentor. Jeff Z.

Shirish Shanbhag

March 31, 2013

Truman Light is one of the great persons that I have come accross.
My deep sympathies. Let departed soul rest in peace.

Myke Simon

March 29, 2013

Ted Light was always eager to use his knowledge to help others, in chemistry, in life. He was a mensch. He was missed, he will be missed.

March 28, 2013

I will always remember Ted from Thornton always a gentle person and so very brilliant. He will be missed. Sandy Bell, Framingham, MA


March 28, 2013

Ted and Arlene were leaders of the American Chemical Society
for many years, helping large numbers of chemists with their development in employment opportunities. Ted was modest and a high achiever. He will be missed.

Nancy Cohen

March 27, 2013

I loved spending time with both Arlene and Ted at the nursing home. Everyone could see the love in both of their eyes. He will be missed by many. My deepest sympathies