- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 14, 2006

Irwin Manning, a former nuclear physicist at the Naval Research Laboratory, died Dec. 9 of respiratory failure at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He was 76.

Mr. Manning graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1951 as an electrical engineer and earned his doctorate in physics from MIT in 1955.

He taught at Syracuse University and the University of Wisconsin before joining the Naval Research Laboratory, where he first worked on the laboratory’s accelerator, producing high-energy particles for research.

He later worked on ion implantation, which is at the heart of all of today’s transistorized electronic devices.

At his retirement in 1990, Mr. Manning was creating predictive computer models of thermal processes, such as melting. He continued his work in retirement as a contractor to the research lab, assembling a massive computer in the basement of his home in the Brookdale section of Chevy Chase.

Mr. Manning was known for letting neighborhood children sled down his steeply sloping lawn.

Adults also recognized him as a spirited walker who maintained a health regimen that included yoga, a strict diet and advanced medical care that helped him maintain an active lifestyle after being diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1996.

Mr. Manning also read medical research papers to seek out the newest cancer therapies and traveled to Loma Linda Medical Center in California to receive radiation from its proton device.

Born in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, N.Y., Mr. Manning was taught to avoid unnecessary contact with Christians by his strict Hasidic parents. He later recounted this with a wry smile: As a young scientist he married Amelia Young, a Catholic and diplomatic reporter for The Washington Star.

Mr. Manning came to love the trappings of Hanukkah and Christmas, and attended 17 performances of Handel’s “Messiah.”

Mr. Manning’s first wife died in 1988.

His survivors include his second wife, Shirley Lilja Manning of Chevy Chase; daughters Sara Elizabeth Manning of Bethesda and Emily Susan Manning of Baltimore; and stepsons Adam Schainblatt of Raleigh, N.C., and Aaron Schainblatt of Phoenix.

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