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Albert Lawson Boni

May 8, 1933 — December 27, 2020

AIKEN, SC - Albert Lawson Boni passed away at home in the early morning hours of December 27, 2020.  He is survived by his wife, Alice; daughter Debra Boni Gifford of Clearwater, Florida; son Bradley (Kelly) of Aiken; son, Bret (Janet) Goodwin of Fort Mill, South Carolina; daughter Sharon (Glen) DeHart of Aiken; eight grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

     He was born in Brockton, Massachusetts, in 1933.

     Mr. Boni received a degree in chemistry from Harvard University in 1955, studying under Professor George Kistiakowsky of the Manhattan Project.  After graduation, he moved to Aiken beginning his career as a research and development chemist with the DuPont Company at the Savannah River Plant now Savannah River Site.  His primary assignment was the development of radioisotope measurement technology to assess the impact of nuclear materials production effluents and nuclear weapons test fallout on plant personnel, the surrounding public and the environment.  This research led to his involvement with national and international nonproliferation of nuclear weapons as part of the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Nonproliferation and National Security.  As research manager of the Environmental Technology Section (later becoming the Nonproliferation Technologies Section), he established the Special Programs Group in support of federal agencies in the area of technical collection related to nuclear weapons development programs earning recognition by the U.S. government as an expert in environmental technical collection and the detection of nuclear proliferation signatures.  Some of the agencies that consulted with him include the U.S. Department of Defense, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, the National Aeronautical and Space Administration, and the International Atomic Energy Agency.  He served with distinction on numerous government advisory committees and international inspection teams including service on the IAEA Action Team for Iraq under the auspices of the United Nations weapons inspection team for Iraq.

     Mr. Boni published over 150 peer-reviewed journal articles and government reports on high sensitivity detection methods and technologies including their application to environmental studies.  In 1988, he received formal recognition from the government for his past contributions to nuclear nonproliferation.  In 1998, he received the Citizens for Nuclear Technology Awareness (CNTA) Distinguished Scientist Award that recognizes exceptional lifetime scientific contribution.  The next year he received the Don Orth Award in the area of nuclear nonproliferation and high sensitivity measurements of radionuclides.

     Beyond a lifetime dedication to his field of work, Mr. Boni was an Eagle Scout and served as waterfront director for the Boy Scout National Jamboree for many years, played varsity basketball for Harvard University and later coached the former St. Angela Academy of Aiken boys varsity team for many years leading them to a state basketball championship.  He was a long time IPTAY member and avid Clemson supporter of his “adopted” university.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be mailed to the SRS Historical Foundation at P.O. Box 2226, Aiken, SC 29802.

     A memorial service will be held Saturday afternoon, January 2nd at 3 o’clock at St. John’s United Methodist Church in Aiken.  The Rev. Dr. W. Timothy McClendon will officiate.  The service will be livestreamed on St. John's Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/stjohnsaiken 

SHELLHOUSE FUNERAL HOME, 924 HAYNE AVE., AIKEN, SC

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Saturday, January 2, 2021

Starts at 3:00 pm (Eastern time)

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St. John's United Methodist Church

104 Newberry St NW
Aiken, SC 29801

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