December 29, 1919 ~ October 21, 2009
PAUL P. DATNER
December 29, 1919 - October 21, 2009
Born December 29, 1919 in Budapest, Hungary, Paul was the only child of Ignac and Margit Datner. He left Hungary shortly before the outbreak of World War II to study mechanical engineering at the Zurich Institute of Technology. He would remain a resident of Switzerland until immigrating to the United States in 1949.
Settling in Southern California, Paul met and married Phyllis Ann Miller, formerly of Lima, Ohio. While raising two children, Penny and Philip, they resided in Covina, Sacramento, Miami, and Claremont, as Paul was transferred to various departments in the Aerojet-General Corporation. While at Aerojet, he played a key role in developing the first Polaris missile, a submarine-launched weapon. He also managed the 260-inch rocket booster program, which remains the largest solid fuel rocket motor ever fired, and for which he received a NASA Public Service Award for outstanding contributions to the field of solid propulsion. Later in life, Paul worked in the water desalinization field and then finished his career service as an executive recruiter.
An avid outdoorsman, Paul enjoyed skiing, hiking, camping, and boating. He particularly enjoyed the opportunity to ski free at Mammoth Mountain for several years after exceeding their upper age limit for lift tickets.
Preceded in death by his wife in 1982, Paul is survived by both his children: Penny Ross of Hawthorne, CA and Philip Datner of San Jose, CA; and three grandchildren: Joe, Amy, and Andy. Private graveside services will be held Friday, October 30, 2009, at Oak Park Cemetery in Claremont, California.
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