×

Roselawn Funeral Home & Roselawn Memorial Gardens

5350 Nw Broad Street, Murfreesboro, TN

OBITUARY

Dr. Rubye P. Torrey, PhD

February 18, 1926October 26, 2017

Dr. Rubye Mayette Prigmore Torrey, Assistant Vice President for Research and Professor of Chemistry (Emeritus), Tennessee Technological University (TTU) in Cookeville, Tennessee, entered the Kingdom of Heaven on October 26, 2017. In accordance with the family’s wishes, a Celebration of Life Service to honor her memory will be held February 17, 2018 in the Sanctuary of First Presbyterian Church, 4815 Franklin Pike, Nashville, Tennessee. Pre-Service music begins at 10:15am with Memorial Service to begin at 11:00am. A lunch repass buffet for all attendees will follow after the service in the Fellowship Hall. Dr. Torrey was the youngest of three daughters born to Professor C. Claiborne and Mrs. Olivia Lee Mayette Prigmore in the East Tennessee town of Sweetwater. She attended a boarding school in Rogersville, Tennessee known as Swift Memorial Junior College (established by the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.), then earned both her Baccalaureate and Master of Science degrees at Tennessee State University (TSU) with honors. Dr. Torrey earned her doctoral degree in radiation-electroanalytical chemistry at Syracuse University in Syracuse, New York where she was elected to the Research Honor Society of Sigma Xi. After receiving her doctorate, Dr. Torrey did post-doctoral research in the Mass Spectrometry Division of Brookhaven National Laboratory in Long Island, New York. At TSU, she established a research laboratory in gaseous ion chemistry with funds from the Atomic Energy Commission; in 1979, Dr. Torrey was the Founder of “Research Day” at TSU which is now University-Wide Research Symposium Week (in its fortieth year). In 1983, Dr. Torrey was invited to be a visiting chemist at the National Bureau of Standards (now the National Institute of Standards & Technology), and among other accolades she achieved the illustrious status of Emeritus membership in the American Chemical Society. Dr. Torrey was always active in the community where she lived; in particular, she loved church work. A life-long Presbyterian, Dr. Torrey served the greater church on several Presbytery Units, and was a faithful member of First Presbyterian Church (FPC) in Nashville, Tennessee for forty-seven years. At FPC, Dr. Torrey served: on numerous committees as a Deacon and an Elder; as a member of the inaugural Congregational Care Committee; and as a member of the Sanctuary Choir for forty-five years (Emeritus). Dr. Torrey leaves behind to cherish her memory: Mr. Claude A. Torrey (husband) of Cookeville, Tennessee; Ms. Claudia O. Torrey, Esq. (daughter) of Nashville and Cookeville, Tennessee; and Mr. Michael Torrey (son) of Chicago, Illinois; other relatives, colleagues and friends.

Services

  • In The Dining Room

Memories

Dr. Rubye P. Torrey, PhD

have a memory or condolence to add?

ADD A MEMORY
Melissa Bailey Billingsley

April 9, 2018

I did not know Dr. Torrey. But, I knew her sisters from Sweetwater very well. As a child visiting my uncle and aunt (Bedford and Mar Della Mayotte) on Sundays after church, her sisters would come by and they would talk very kindly of their sister, Dr. Torrey. Rest in peace, Dr. Torrey. May we meet one day in heaven with all of our loved ones.

Jeannette Brown

February 16, 2018

I am so sorry that Dr.Torrey has died. I first met her when we were working on the Women Chemists Committee of the American Chemical Society. We were both elected to be members of the ACS Council becoming one of the few African American women to become Councilors.
Dr. Torrey's story is in my book African American Women Chemists and also in the book Sisters in Science by Dianne Jordan. When asked about being a pioneer African American woman scientists, she said We do not need to be viewed as black scientists, Negro scientists or African American scientists, we simply need to be accepted as scientists. All the adjectives are not needed
She always mentored young women and men who wanted to become scientists because she thought that they should be able to do what they wanted to do and become what they wanted to become
Jeannette E. Brown
Author of Book
African American Women Chemists

Gary & Carolyn Mueller

February 16, 2018

Although we will not be able to attend the memorial service, please know that we will be there in spirit. It was a joy to know Dr. Rubye. What a remarkable life she had of such uncommon distinction. Her professional & personal achievements live on in the students she taught & the memories she provided for all of us who were blessed to know her. May God bless this most good & faithful servant. The Doctors Mueller: Gary & Carolyn

Sandra-Kay Daniels

February 14, 2018

It has been such a privilege to know Dr. Torrey, and we send our deepest sympathy to Claudia and all of Dr. Torrey's family. You will be in our prayers during this difficult time.
David and Sandra-Kay

Sally Burch

February 14, 2018

My dear friend Claudia, my condolences to you and the family. I feel blessed to have known and loved Rubye for over 36 years. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY