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Dear Anne, What a large loss in losing your father. Such an amazing man on all levels
A life well lived which enriched the lives of others. Maurice leaves a long legacy in academia and family that will be treasured for years to come. Farwell good friend and loving father. With great respect Bill
Maurice W. Long
Maurice W. Long of Fernandina Beach, Florida, died Saturday, October 14, 2023, at the age of 98, at his residence, surrounded by his family. A funeral will be held at the Oxley-Heard Funeral Directors in Fernandina Beach on Friday, October 20, 2023, at 3:00 p.m.
Maurice was born April 20, 1925, in Madisonville, Kentucky, to Martha Ann Nourse Long and Maurice K. Long. They moved to Jacksonville, Florida, where he joined the Boy Scouts at age twelve and became an Eagle Scout in record time. He remembered getting 21 merit badges; he liked the ones in electricity and radio, but not those in reptiles and birds. When he was a teenager or younger, he became a licensed radio amateur. He built a number of radio transmitters and receivers, and his call letters were W4GPR.
Maurice had several jobs during his high school years. He delivered the Florida Times-Union (the morning paper) in Jacksonville, sorted mail for the U. S. Postal Service, and sold hats at J. C. Penney’s. He later received training in a U. S. government program in radio technology during World War II, even though he was too young to officially be a student. He excelled and was amazed when they asked him to teach courses to the actual students.
In 1948, Maurice met Patricia Lee Holmes, and in February 1950, they were married and lived in New York City. They later returned to Georgia, when Maurice worked for the Georgia Institute of Technology. They had two children: Anne Catherine Long, and Jane Elizabeth Long. In 1961, Mrs. Long was died in a traffic accident in France, while she, Dr. Long, and her family members were traveling.
Maurice later met Beverly Benson Downing, who had two children. Maurice and Beverly married in 1963, and the family lived in Atlanta. They all also spent a year in 1966 in London, where Maurice was a liaison scientist with the U. S. Office of Naval Research. After 52 years of marriage, Beverly passed away in 2015.
Maurice loved math, science, and radio technology. He received a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Tech in 1946. He also received a Master of Science in Physics and a Ph. D. from Georgia Tech, and a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Kentucky. Maurice served as the Director of the Engineering Experiment Station at Georgia Tech (later renamed the Georgia Tech Research Institute) from 1968-1975. He was an enthusiastic fan of Georgia Tech all his life. He also was a radar consultant to the U. S. Office of Naval Research. He continued his career in radar and in the 1990s consulted on the radar design for the Patriot missile. He also worked at Lockheed, and he taught physics to graduate students into his 90s at Southern Polytechnic State University (now Kennesaw State University’s Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology) in Marietta, Georgia. He loved teaching the next generations of scientists.
Maurice spent several years at the Lenbrook retirement community in Atlanta, where he took advantage of all the activities that Lenbrook had to offer, especially classes in swimming and even African dance. Maurice was an outgoing and friendly person, and developed many strong friendships there, particularly Carolyn Magruder. Maurice then moved to the Lakeside at Amelia Island retirement community in Fernandina Beach in 2022, where he again made close friendships, especially his “dinner club.”
Maurice loved his family and they dearly loved him.
He leaves behind his children Anne Long Key and Elizabeth Rice (Drew); his stepchildren Doug Downing (Rita) and Tricia Downing (Jeff Davis); his five grandchildren, Michael Wilds (Lori) Davidson, James Jeffrey Rice, John Andrew Rice, Christopher Drew Rice and Anna Sophia Downing and his great-grandchildren, Mattie Elizabeth Davidson and Wilds Holden Davidson.