Williamsburg - William E. Tucker, 78, a retired nuclear physicist and senior Federal Official, died at home of heart disease on Oct. 27, 2008. Dr. Tucker received his PhD, MA and BS degrees in physics from the University of Texas at Austin. He served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force for four years during the Korean War. Dr. Tucker began his civilian professional career as an experimental research scientist at Texas Nuclear Corporation (TNC in Austin, Texas). While at TNC, he authored and co-authored over 50 research publications and reports. Dr. Tucker ended his tenure with TNC as their Director of Research in 1974, and went to work at the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC in Washington, D.C.).
His tour as a Federal employee spanned service at the AEC, the Energy Research and Development Administration and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). While at these agencies, Dr. Tucker initiated an Energy Related Inventions Program, in cooperation the National Bureau of Standards, a program to encourage small R&D companies to participate in energy related research of interest to the Federal government, and acted as a principal contact with labor unions, state and local elected officials, and tribal leaders on energy related matters for these agencies. He was awarded a Distinguished Service Award while in DOE. He was a member of the Federal Senior Executive Service. Dr. Tucker retired form Federal service in 1996 as Deputy Director of Intergovernmental Affairs at DOE, and moved to Williamsburg, Virginia in 1997.
He was active in the Episcopal Church in Texas, Maryland and Williamsburg, serving in various leadership roles. He was a volunteer at Colonial Williamsburg in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Survivors include his wife Claudia Cowal Tucker; two children, daughter, Lucinda Ann Dimmick, husband, Dan and their children, Kimberly Ann and Charles; daughter, Laura Elizabeth Hannegan, husband, Michael and their children, John and Megan. Additionally, he leaves step-son Peter Garran, wife, Nikki and their children, Alejandra and Keera; and step-daughter, Heather LeMaire, husband, Shawn and daughter, Rebecca.
A memorial service with be held Nov. 17, 2:00 p.m. at Bruton Parish Episcopal Church, 331 Duke of Gloucester Street, Williamsburg. Memorial contributions may be made to Bruton Parish Church or to a favorite charity.
Arrangements are entrusted to Nelsen Funeral Home. Online condolences may be registered here or at Nelsen Funeral Home.