Eugene Francis Laxton was born in Ross, CA on May 30, 1927 to Ernest and Rose Laxton of San Anselmo, CA. He passed away on Saturday, February 28, 2009 in Torrance, CA, due to complications from pancreatic cancer. Eugene is survived by son Richard Laxton, daughter-in-law Susan Laxton and grandson Scott Laxton of Fresno, CA, son Dr. Robert Laxton and daughter-in-law Janet Laxton of Torrance, CA, and daughter Julie Laxton of Dominguez Hills, CA. He married Cecilia Elizabeth Johnsen on December 15, 1947 in San Diego, CA. They were married for fifty-seven years until her death in October 2004. Eugene graduated from Tamalpais High School in January 1945, where he was co-captain of the varsity football team. After high school, he enlisted in the United States Navy where he served at the U.S. Naval Training Center in San Diego, CA. Eugene was honorably discharged in 1948 with the rank of Aviation Metalsmith Third Class. He earned a certificate in Aeronautical Engineering from Northrop Aeronautical Institute in 1950; an Associate of Arts Degree from El Camino College in 1958 and a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautical Engineering from Northrop Institute of Technology in 1966. Eugene had a distinguished career as an aerospace engineer for thirty-five years. He worked for Northrop Aviation, North American Aviation, Rockwell International, Grumman, and retired from Boeing in 1993. He worked on many projects that advanced the boundaries of flight, such as the XB-70 Valkyrie prototype, Apollo spacecraft, Space Shuttle program, and the B-1B Lancer strategic bomber. Eugene's engineering groups were often recognized for their outstanding contributions. His B-1 team was awarded the Robert J. Collier Trophy in 1977 for outstanding achievement in Aeronautics. In retirement, Eugene enjoyed home improvement projects and attending luncheons with members of his Tamalpais High School football team, and breakfasts with fellow aerospace retirees. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends. A Celebration of Life service will be Saturday, March 14, 2009 at 11:00 AM at Resurrection Lutheran Church, 330 Palos Verdes Blvd., Redondo Beach, CA. A funeral service with Graveside will be held at Valley Memorial Park, 650 Bugeia Lane, Novato, CA, (415) 897-9609 on Saturday, March 21, 2009 at 10:00AM. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the American Cancer Society Los Angeles Coastal Cities Unit or by phone at 800-227-2345 5731 W. Slauson Avenue #200 Culver City, Ca 90230

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  1. To the Laxton Family, I was privileged to work with Gene at the Rockwell Facility in Downey on the Space Shuttle. Gene was a very conscientious engineer and fun to work with. I also attended his ‘Stress Group’ Luncheons. My condolences to Gene’s family. May God bless and comfort you in this time of loss.

  2. My father, Chuck Stack, would have been very sad to hear the news about Gene. He also passed away just this last Monday, March 9th. Gene visited my Dad here in Portland this last year and had a wonderful time sharing their memories growing up in Marin. My Dad thoroughly enjoyed his visit and I’m so glad Gene took the time and energy to make that trip. Peace and comfort to you during this difficult time. I know you will carry your father in your hearts forever as I will mine. Denise Stack

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