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Willard Tuyl Van Rusch ’54

Published in Mar. 24, 1993, issue

OUR ESTEEMED and beloved classmate Bill Rusch died May 27, 1992. Although an experienced scuba diver, he died while diving in 85 feet of water off San Miguel Island, Calif. Diving meant so much to Billhis answering machine at work said "As far as I'm concerned, I'd rather be diving."

Bill attended the George School and at Princeton majored in electrical engineering. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa his junior year, and was valedictorian of the Class of 1954. After college Bill got his Ph.D. from CalTech. He then spent a year in Germany as a Fulbright scholar. In 1960 he joined the faculty of the Dept. of Electrical Engineering at U.S.C., where he continued until his death.

At both Princeton and U.S.C., Bill earned many awards, among them the Albert G. Milbank Memorial Scholarship Prize at Princeton, given to the undergraduate with the highest academic ranking, and the U.S.C. Distinguished Faculty Award. He received a NASA award for his contribution to space science. He had a number of patents and was a consultant to over 25 companies. An undergraduate honors program at U.S.C. has been renamed to honor Bill. He was also renowned as an expert in the research area of reflector antennas and was co-author of the classic textbook on the subject.

Bill found time to spend 10 to 15 hours a week working with the Hospice of Pasadena program. He had told a local newspaper once, "It was time to get involved with the other half of the human race: the old, the sick, and the poor."

Our sympathies go to Bill's widow, Joann; his children Leonard, Marcy, Tuyl, and Garrett; his grandchildren; and his parents, Hugh and Cynthia.

The Class of 1954

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