Dillon Heierman McDaniel
- February 9, 1945 - May 1, 2012
- Albuquerque, New Mexico
of Dillon's Passing
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Memories & CandlesPrevious
“I am so sorry to hear about your dad. He was more than a friend to me. I was away on travel and just returned to the terrible news. I have more...Read More »
1 of 18 | Posted by: Tim Sheridan - Cedar Crest, NM
“Dillon was one of these scientists who count for the world of his science, for him: the High Pulsed Power. All the french researchers wish him a good...Read More »
2 of 18 | Posted by: Christophe MANGEANT
“I count Dillon as one of the best friends I ever had. He was not only a friend to me--he was a friend to almost every one he met and dealt with. He...Read More »
3 of 18 | Posted by: Barry Moore - Austin, TX
“Our daughter, Laurie, is married to Dillon’s oldest son, also named Dillon (aka Buzzy). We can also lay claim to 3 of Dillon’s 16 grandchildren...Read More »
4 of 18 | Posted by: Trent and Pam Tyler - Albuquerque, NM
“Dillon was a personal friend and respected colleague since 1978. He always demonstrated a well-rounded balance of family, work, and friends. We had a...Read More »
5 of 18 | Posted by: Tom & Noelle Mehlhorn - VA
“To all of you amazing, wonderful children and grandchildren,
I just wish I could hold all of you tight!. I just learned this evening and Tom and...Read More »
6 of 18 | Posted by: valerie - albuq, NM
“We arrived at the University of Texas in the fall of 1968 to begin work on the Physics Department Faculty when Dillon was a grad student. We worked...Read More »
7 of 18 | Posted by: Roger & Billie Bengtson - Austin, TX
“Dylan was a guide and a friend to me. I'm sorry he's gone.
8 of 18 | Posted by: neal singer - albuquerque, NM
“missing u already granddad i hope where u are is very peaceful and u are with the ones who loved u in the past.. i will always look up at the stars...Read More »
9 of 18 | Posted by: Addison Lee Sarber - Albuquerque, NM
“I have many fond memories of working closely with Dillon in pulsed power R&D during many years at SNL, even including when he and Ken Prestwich...Read More »
10 of 18 | Posted by: Steve Goldstein - Las Vegas, NV
“I supervised Dillon's Ph.D. dissertation and we continued our friendship with him and his family. Dillon was an exceptional scientist who was highly...Read More »
11 of 18 | Posted by: Mel and Pat Oakes - Austin, TX
“Through our son Marti's marriage to Dillon;s daughter Katie, we have been very aware of his warm and loving relationship to his children and...Read More »
12 of 18 | Posted by: Mary and Merl Sarber - El Paso, TX
“I send my deepest sympathy to the whole family. Dillion was such a giving and loving person. I am so grateful to have met him. Working with him...Read More »
13 of 18 | Posted by: Christina Acosta - Albuquerque, NM
“I have had the pleasure of both working with Dillon, and knowing him as a friend. A lot of really good times. I will miss him dearly. My thoughts...Read More »
14 of 18 | Posted by: John Sethian - VA
“I will always remember Dillion as a quiet man who loved his family and science. He gave me little pearls of wisdom which I quote to this day still. ...Read More »
15 of 18 | Posted by: Michele Hillaker - Des Moines, IA
“My thoughts and prayers are with you. Dillon was very special. I will forever remember his kind and thoughtful heart.
16 of 18 | Posted by: Lisa Mattox - Belen, NM - Friend
“Our most heartfelt condolences to the McDaniel family.
17 of 18 | Posted by: Amelia Visnauskas & Cassandra Dracup - OH
“On behalf of the French Family of Comapnies, we would like to express our deepest condolences to your family.
18 of 18 | Posted by: Buck Dyck and Team
Dillon Heierman McDaniel will be remembered as a loving husband and father with a kind heart and an adventurous spirit. He was regarded by his colleagues as a rare gentleman scientist; always generous, interested, and gracious. He died unexpectedly at his home in Placitas, New Mexico, on May 1, 2012.
Born to Dillon Heyworth McDaniel and Dorothy Heierman McDaniel in Austin, Texas in 1945, he grew up in Miami, Florida. He received his baccalaureate and Ph.D. degrees in physics from the University of Texas (Austin) in 1967 and 1973 respectively. Dillon came to Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) directly from graduate school and began work in the Pulsed Power group. Dillon's career at SNL spanned 38 years. Dillon made a direct impact on research and development of pulse power applications from the US Department of Energy's highest power accelerators to smaller, compact accelerators for radiographic applications and current drivers of isentropic equation-of-state experiments. He was an inspiration to young scientists and continually strived to build a strong international pulsed power community to develop new technology and applications toward high-yield fusion energy. At UT Austin he met Stephanie Hillaker, whom he married on June 4, 1966. Dillon moved his family to Albuquerque, New Mexico in fall 1973. He devoted his life to his wife, children, family, and friends. After losing Stephanie in 2007, he married Susan Mertes in 2010.
His wife survives him, as do all his children, who share their sorrow with their spouses, Karen and Wade Vaught (Alexandria, VA), Gina and David Tarver (Austin, TX), Dillon and Laurie McDaniel (Savannah, GA), Melissa and Chris Dracup (Albuquerque, NM), Mary McDaniel Clum and Tristan Clum (Albuquerque, NM), Katie and Marti Sarber (San Antonio, TX), and Michael and Erin McDaniel (Albuquerque, NM). He leaves behind sixteen grandchildren, who were his joy, Hunter, Connor, Kayla, Quinn, Addi, Aleida, Max, Nora, Wesley, Liam, Corinne, Owen, Collin, Ian, Ellie and Harbour.
Even the deepest grief felt by all those who were close to him cannot match the love that he gave during his 67 years of life. He lived life with all his heart. Though his time was short, his impact on family and friends will be felt forever. A visitation will be held from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, May 4 and a celebration of his life at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 5 at French – Wyoming Chapel followed by interment at Mount Calvary Cemetery. Donations in Dillon's name can be made to the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund at www.ocrf.org.