Obituary: Theodore Shmanda
Theodore Shmanda, age 95, retired chemical engineer and oil company executive, passed away at Stamford Hospital on Wednesday, October 10, 2012 after a brief illness. He was a Darien resident since 1957.
He was the son of the late Katherine and John Shmanda, of Philadelphia, PA. Ted was predeceased by his loving wife, Katherine, and his son Theodore Alan of Alexandria, Virginia. He was also predeceased by his younger brother William, who died at the Battle of the Bulge during World War II.
Ted was born in Philadelphia, PA on November 8, 1916. He attended Philadelphia public schools and his scholastic achievements gained him admission to Central High School, the only high school in the nation authorized to grant its graduates Bachelor of Arts college degrees instead of ordinary high school diplomas if students meet the requirements. As a student there, Ted showed a keen interest in astronomy, photography and chemistry.
Upon graduation in 1934, Ted enrolled at Drexel University and graduated with a degree in chemical engineering. He was employed in the chemical industry, joining the Sinclair Oil Company in 1943, located at it Marcus Hook, PA oil refinery. His job there was considered to be crucial to the war effort. He held several progressive positions and in 1956 was promoted to chief technician at the refinery. While living in Pennsylvania with his family, Ted was a member of the Nether Providence Township Board of Education, and the American Petroleum Institute.
In September, 1957 Ted was promoted and transferred to the corporate office in New York City, where he continued his engineering project responsibilities. The projects he directed involved worldwide travel.
In 1969 Sinclair was acquired by the Atlantic Richfield Company, where Ted remained holding the position of Assistant to the Manager of Manufacturing and Engineering before being promoted to Senior Project Engineer, a title he held until his retirement in 1980.
During his retirement Ted enjoyed traveling with his wife Katherine, particularly to the south western states. He was an avid reader, enjoyed wood-working, leather craft, and doing cross-word puzzles in the New York Times. Ted also followed his interest in astronomy and photography. His inquisitive nature led him to continually learn and explore evolving technologies, well into his nineties.
Ted was a loving father who will be sadly missed by his son John Shmanda and his wife Sharon, of Norwalk, CT, and his daughter Elaine Mester and her husband Richard, of Monroe, CT. He will also be dearly missed by Miss Angela Kim, of Fairfield Station, VA, who considered him to be her grandfather.
Visitation will be held at the Edward Lawrence Funeral Home, 2119 Post Road, Darien on Saturday, October 13, 2012 from 9:00 to 10:00 AM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. John R.C. Church, 1986 Post Road, Darien on Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 10:30 AM. Interment will follow at Spring Grove Cemetery, Darien.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his memory to the Darien Library, 1441 Post Road, Darien, CT 06820, or Central High School, 1700 W. Olney Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19141; (215)276-5262. www.lawrencefuneralhome.com