608 S. Old Middletown Road
Media, PA 19063
Obituary of Dr. Kenneth M. McNeil
Dr. Kenneth M. McNeil, emeritus associate professor of chemical engineering at Widener University, passed away September 27, 2019. The cause of death was heart failure. The son of George M. McNeil and May nee Hood, he was born October 20, 1941, in Edinburgh, Scotland. His marriage to Heather H. Wardlaw ended in divorce in 2006.
He received his B.Sc. (summa cum laude) from the University of Edinburgh in 1962. Thereafter he studied at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge, receiving his Ph.D. in 1966. He joined Widener University as Chair of the Chemical Engineering Department in 1982. He retired in 2006. Earlier he had taught as a lecturer at Cambridgeshire College of Arts and Technology, Cambridge, England, and as an assistant professor at Drexel University. He also worked as a project engineer at AMOCO Chemicals Corporation (Whiting, IN). His area of expertise was chemical process research and development, design, and evaluation. His teaching areas were thermodynamics, mass-transfer operations, and applied reaction kinetics and catalysis. He was a former Carnegie Foundation Scholar (1962-65), and a member of the Institute of Chemical Engineers, the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the American Chemical Society, and the American Society of Engineering Education. He was also a registered professional engineer in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
At Widener, he was an active academic citizen. He served as Chair of the Faculty (two terms), and as Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee, Chair of the Faculty Council Bylaws Revision Committee, and on numerous other faculty committees for the university and the School of Engineering.
An avid enthusiast for chamber music, he regularly attended the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, the Marlboro Music Festival, and the Curtis Institute of Music student recitals. He was a student of both the piano and the cello and he amassed a substantial collection of recordings by chamber music groups from around the world.
A celebration of his life, interests, and contributions will be held at the Minshall Shropshire- Bleyer Funeral Home, Ltd., Middletown (Rte. #352) & Knowlton Rds., Middletown Twp., Media, PA 19063 on October 10, 2019, gathering at 3:30 p.m., remarks at 4:00 p.m. Contributions in his name may be made to the Curtis Institute of Music, 1726 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103 or to Widener University, c/o Development Office, 1 University Place, Chester, PA 19013.