Obituary: Hugh Putnam
September 25, 2023
Hugh Dyer Putnam passed away September 4, 2023, at the age of 95.
Hugh was born on February 12, 1928, in Carrington, North Dakota, to parents Hugh and Blanche Putnam. He lived a life marked by many achievements and contributions.
After serving honorably in the 6th Infantry Division in the Pacific and the 47th Infantry Division during the Korean War, he returned home to marry his high school sweetheart, Natalie Knott.
His previous education in the local Carrington public school system led him to pursue an undergraduate degree from the University of Minnesota and a PhD from the same institution in 1963. After completing his studies, Hugh relocated with his family to Gainesville, Florida, and joined the faculty of the University of Florida in the College of Engineering.
In 1965, Hugh, along with Charles Harding and Robert Sholtes, co-founded the environmental consulting firm Environmental Engineering, later rebranded as Environmental Science and Engineering. He played a pioneering role in the emerging environmental consulting movement, making notable contributions to the field.
In 1974, Hugh transitioned to Water and Air Research where he served as a principal scientist for 30 years. Throughout his career, he authored numerous papers for professional journals and reports on environmental studies.
Outside of his professional life, Hugh was an active member of Westminster Presbyterian Church and served multiple times as an elder. Along with his love for his family, he also enjoyed bird watching, nature, music, reading and a nightly martini.
Hugh Putnam is survived by his three children and their families: Mark and his wife, Kathy, of Leverkusen, Germany, Lynn and her wife, Mattie, of Brandon, Florida, and Charles and his wife, Devon, of Bonn, Germany. He is also remembered by his grandchildren, Julia, Adam, Olivia, and Stacey, as well as his great-grandchildren, Erik and Lia.
A celebration of Hugh's life was held on Saturday, September 23 at 2 p.m. in Westminster Presbyterian Church.
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests to donate to the American Cancr Society.