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Memorial Tributes: Volume 7
less than we had planned. He loved engineering and chemistry, and his forced retirement from AT&T, under what was then a rigid age rule, was difficult for he was still at the height of his powers and had much to offer. He never complained. He continued to maintain an office at Murray Hill as a consultant on personnel issues, an area in which he continued to make exceedingly valuable contributions. Even so, his technical involvement was lost, which we regretted.
Linc always had a story, never at anyone's expense, to lighten up an occasion. Earlier this year he was being honored by induction into the New Jersey Inventors Hall of Fame. The evening was long, and many speakers possessed of great self-admiration had had abundant access to the microphone. Linc said, "I have only this to remark: 'Behind every successful man there is an amazed mother-in-law.'" Brevity is, indeed, the soul of wit.
It is a matter of ultimate satisfaction that Linc Hawkins, grandson of a slave and educated in segregated schools, stood in the Rose Garden of the White House to receive from the president the highest honor the nation has to offer an engineer.