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A tribute to Dan W. Manson.

The message simply said, "God was merciful and took Dan last night. He passed in peace at 12:05 a.m., Sunday, July 15." My friend, Dan W. Manson, had finally lost his battle to prostate cancer at 68 years of age.

Although born in Detroit and brought up in Grosse Pointe, MI, Dan was a New Englander, and more specifically, a Maine boy at heart. After completing his doctorate at the Institute of Paper Chemistry, there was a short tour of duty at Billeruds Paper Company in Sweden, but after that, most of his life was spent in Maine and New Hampshire. It was the White Mountains and then the rugged coast of Maine that first drew him there, and that kept his spirit.

The names of the paper companies Dan worked for have been swallowed up in acquisitions--Oxford Paper in Rumford, The Brown Company in New Hampshire, and SD Warren in Westbrook, ME, where he worked for 15 years.

When Dan "retired" from SD Warren, he was director of" process research. He said, "I know what I like to do and what I am really good at, and that's what I am going to do." What he liked was making paper machines run better, and he was really, really good at it. After a few years at James River as an internal papermaking consultant, he formed his own consulting company, spending the next 10 years doing what he liked the most.

It was a natural extension of Dan's personality and his love of papermaking to be heavily involved with TAPPI. Beyond being a forum for information exchange, TAPPI meant lifelong friends and the ability to share what he knew with others. He joined the Papermakers Committee in 1964 when it was called the Fourdrinier Committee and helped organize the first Papermakers Conference in 1972. He held all the chairs in the Paper and Board Division and served a term on the TAPPI Board of Directors from 1988-1990. He then served as the first Papermaking Contributing Editor for TAPPI Journal from 1986 to 1993.

But what Dan enjoyed most was his involvement in training Dan was one of the first "Wet End Operations boys" that took over the wet end operations course in 1977. Almost 5000 students have watched Dan's lectures on formation. Few have forgotten it. Dan also was the editor for the "Paper Machine Operators Training" interactive laserdisc course and contributing editor for "How Paper Is Made" and the new "Practical Papermaking" CD-Rom courses.

Dan's awards include the Paper & Board Division Harris O. Ware Prize in 1979, appointment as a TAPPI Fellow in 1985, and a Certificate of Appreciation from the Paper and Board Division in 2000. He also received the Canadian Pulp and Paper Association's I. H. Weldon Award for Best Paper.

Dan never "retired" from TAPPI. The last message I had from was "I have some TAPPI business to discuss with you, but I guess it can wait." I guess now it will have to. Dan's wife, Marei, says his ashes will be scattered from the top of the White Mountains and off the Maine coast. I wonder if a few should be dropped into the white water system of some paper machine so that he can continue to make that big loop from the fan pump on to the wire. I know it is where he would love to be.
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Title Annotation:Deaths
Author:Atkins, Jim
Publication:Solutions - for People, Processes and Paper
Date:Sep 1, 2001
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