Thomas DeSaussure Furman, Sr., of Pickens, SC, died Thursday morning, March 27, 2008 at his home at Table Rock, SC. He was born in Milledgeville, GA on November 8, 1915, the oldest child of the late Dr. William Baker and Mellicent Bacot (DeSaussure) Furman. He was raised in Easley, SC and graduated from Easley High School in 1932. He graduated from the Citadel in 1936 with a BS degree in Civil Engineering and was employed for a number of years by the SC Highway Department and by Harland Bartholomew & Associates of St. Louis, MO. He served in the 29th Special and the 109th Construction Battalions (Sea Bees) of the US Navy during World War II and spent 15 months in the South Pacific Theater. After release from the Navy, he returned to Edgefield, SC and joined the Quattlebaum Engineering Company of Johnson, SC. In 1949, he took a leave of absence and earned a Masters degree at the University of Florida. He returned to SC for a short period of time and in April 1951, joined the faculty of the College of Engineering at the University of Florida as an Assistant Professor of Civil Engineering and Assistant Research Professor. In July 1980, he retired from the University of Florida as Professor Emeritus of Environmental Sciences. He returned to live in Pickens County, SC. Active in the profession of engineering, he served as President of the Florida Engineering Society, the Florida Water Pollution Control Association and the Florida Council of Engineering Societies. He served as a Director and a Director-at-large of the Water Pollution Control Association and a Director of the National Society of Professional Engineers. He was a Fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Florida Engineering Society and a Diplomat of the American Academy of Environmental Engineering. He was a Registered Engineer in South Carolina and Florida. He co-authored a book and authored 30 technical and professional articles. He was recipient of the Arthur Sidney Bedel Award, and two Distinguished Service Awards given by the Water Pollution Control Association. He received a Distinguished Teaching Award from Florida Blue Key and four awards given annually by Tau Beta Pi for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching. He was named Engineer of the Year by the Florida Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers. He was a member of Tau Beta Pi, Sigma Xl, Phi Kappa Phi, Omicron Delta Kappa, and the Florida Blue Key. Interested in history and genealogy since childhood, he was a member of The South Carolina Historical Society, the Huguenot Society of South Carolina and The University South Caroliniana Society. He served as President of the Greenville Chapter of the South Carolina Genealogical Society for several years. He was Genealogist of the Heyward Family Association and authored a book, Ancestors and Descendants of Nathaniel Heyward. He was a member of the Saint Cecelia Society and the Sons of the American Revolution. He married in October 1940, Harriet Adams Mims (1917-1980) of Edgefield, SC, daughter of James Talton and Emily Octavia (Adams) Mims. They were parents of four children: two sons, Thomas DeSaussure Furman, and Richard Adams Furman, and two daughters, Harriet Keith Furman and Susan Heyward Furman. In addition to his parents, he is predeceased by his first wife of 40 years, Harriet Adams Mims, step-mother, Ruth DeSaussure Furman, and two sisters, Caroline Heyward (Furman) Hamilton of Clemson, SC and Mellicent DeSaussure (Furman) White of Easley, SC. He is survived by his second wife of 27 years, Anne (Aldrich) Furman of the home. Surviving children are Thomas DeSaussure Furman and wife Susan (Web) of Concord, MA, their son John Webb Furman; Harriet Keith (Furman) Rice and husband Chester Allen Rice of Woolrich, ME; Richard Adams Furman and wife Judith (Fletcher) of Gainsville, FL, their children, Jennifer Hodge married to Gregory Paul Jacobs, Katherine Adams Married to James Jackson Swick, III, and Thomas Fletcher Furman; Susan Heyward (Furman) Kohout and husband Patrick Richard Kohout and Ryan Keith Furman Kohout. He is also survived by his brother, William Baker Furman, Jr. of Pickens, SC, and his sister, Janette (Furman) Hamilton of Clemson, SC. He is also survived by many beloved nieces, nephews, family, friends, and his cat Gateway. He was soft spoken with a glimmer in his blue eyes and a whisper of a smile. His lifelong and everlasting gift of genealogical research is a legacy to his family and the state of South Carolina. His countless biographies, accurate and complete with pictures, anecdotes, and scandalous tidbits are cherished and will be maintained through time. We have lost a beautiful person indeed. A celebration of life memorial service will be held at a later date. A private burial will be in Edgefield, SC. Condolences may be expressed online at or in person at ROBINSON FUNERAL HOME – DOWNTOWN EASLEY, SC. Visit our guestbook at Published in the Charleston Post & Courier on 3/30/2008. Tags: 1936

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