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Mug Shots From the LASR Archives
Taken at Midway Labs *

Found and scanned by
Gene Drag, Gary Kelderhouse and Roger Pyle

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1. Tony Tuzzolino
2. Warren Harvey 3. Frank Wells ? 4. Ron Draus 5. Jim Lamport
6. Ed Stone
7. C.Y. (Charlie) Fan 8. K.C. (John) Hsieh 9. George Vrabel 10. Randy Bogan
11. Murry Perkins 12. Bob Sauer 13. Bob Takaki 14. Myron Weber 15. Rich Blenz
16. Ed Tums
17. Joe Jezewski 18. Don Sturges 19. Jimmy Landrum 20. Bill Six
21. George Ho
22. Julius Kristoff 23. John Stepney 24. George Wang ? 25. Roger Gabriel
26. Joe Matthews 27. Dick Weissman 28. Emil Mascny ? 29. Gary Kelderhouse 30. Bob Carroll
31. George Shimotori 32. Gene Drag 33. Bill Brubaker 34. Len Erickson 35. Pat Abbaduto ?

(*) Chicago Midway Labs (CML)

Midway Labs (as it was usually referred to) was a University of Chicago run laboratory South of the Midway (around 63rd street) doing classified work in the 1940s and 1950s. According to Warren Harvey (#2), the director was Thorfin R Hogness a professor in the Department of Chemistry at the U of C. At the beginning of the space age (late 1950s), John Simpson engaged them into helping him build his first instrument for space, most likely Pioneer-2. Charlie Fan (#7) who had just gotten his Ph.D. in 1952 with Herbert Anderson worked with Simpson on these projects. Ed Stone (#6), who received his Ph.D. with Simpson in 1964 was also most likely involved.

When Peter Meyer and Charlie Fan had their electron detector instrument design accepted for a flight on OGO-5, I was asked to join into the effort and Charlie took me several times to Midway Labs to meet and work with a mechanical designer called Hank Thomas - a very interesting character who later on became a member of LASR's engineering staff. Hank's design philosophy was that everything he designed "piloted together", no shear forces on the screws, just compression!! At that time, the scientists were all on the third floor of EFI since that was 3 years before LASR. Bob Sauer was the Sr. Circuit Designer for OGO-5 and several others projects like IMP, SURVEYOR as well as balloon projects.

According to Bob Sauer, the original Simpson Team of satellite designers (electronic) were B. Takaki (#13), R. Emmert, Ed Tums (#16) and Bob Sauer (#12). Later E. Grokulsky and R. van Welden joined us. Takaki, Tums and Emmert left LAS circa 1963-1964, before the move to 933 E. 56th Street which became LASR Some mechanical designers like Hank Thomas also followed.

George Vrabel (#9) was one of the photographers who took these pictures as photo ID badges were required at Midway Labs. All employees had to have a secret or top secret security clearance for the government work they were doing. Photographs like those above may only exist for personnel who worked at Midway Labs.

The official Chicago Midway Labs Story - Thanks to Warren Harvey.

The controversies (almost solved)

#3 - Bud Boersma says that he was the brother-in-law of Jim Lamport's secretary, Barbara Helms and and that he worked with Wayne Anderson. Gene Drag says that he is Frank Wells who worked in quality control with Ray Martin. The 1965 LASR phone book shows Frank Wells and Ray Martin both in LASR Rm. 22 which I think was the QA room in the NW corner. Don Bonasera also agrees.

#12 - Case closed, it is Bob Sauer as I just heard it directly from him today (5/19/03). He is retired and living in Menlo Park, CA. He can be reached at bobsauer2003@yahoo.com

Several of us remember him as an electronics engineer with a German accent who lived in Hyde Park and had a sailboat. Fred Sopron actually worked for him when he was hired. HOWEVER, Warren Harvey disagrees and sent me a picture to prove that this person is not Bob Saur but "someone from the Physics Department of the chicago Midway Labs" (whatever that is).

I just heard from Don Bonasera who says: "#12 is "without doubt" Bob Sauer who I worked with at another company before either he or I came to U/C. He arranged my interview with Peter Meyer, Jim Lamport and Tom Burdick (Peter's electronic lead)". Now I am beginning to think that Warren is the one who is wrong.

#17 - Roger Pyle says that he is Joe Jezewski and I tend to agree because of the bow tie. But Bud Boersma disagree but has no suggestion. Gene Drag and Fred Sopron agree with Roger and I. So Bud is probably wrong. Joe sure looks young in that picture. I recently heard from Bob Sauer and he is also convinced that he is Joe Jezewski. Case closed too.

#19 - Bud Boersma, Fred Sopron and Gene Drag all agree that he was a machinist that worked in the back of Al Hoteko's machine shop. Fred calls him Jimmie Landrum and Gene calls him Jimmy Landis. I now have the 1965 LASR phone book (thanks to Ed Stone) and his name is James Landrum. And the book show him in LASR Rm. 62, the same room as Al Hoteko. Bob Sauer is also sure that he is James Landrum. Case closed too.

Bud thought that he was Jimmy LeBlanc but that has to be wrong since several of us remember Jimmy LeBlanc as the fellow who died in his hotel room near GSFC. LeBlanc is apparently not pictured on this page. Bob Sauer agrees with the story and with the spelling of Jimmy's last name.

#22 - According to Gene Drag, he is Julius Kristoff who worked with Tony Tuzzolino and Murry Perkins. Don Bonasera agrees and so does Bob Sauer. Case closed too.

#24 - George Wong or Wang according to Tony Tuzzolino. He worked with him and Murry Perkins. I just heard from Miriam Forman and she says that his name is Wang. Any other confirmations?

Eight new pictures came in thanks to
Gene Drag and Gary Kelderhouse

#28 Is it Emil Mascony or Emil Mascny?

#35 Is it Pat Abbaduto or Pat Abbeduto

More Comments

  • 05/19/03 Bob Sauer who recently contacted me says: "You should be able to get mug shots of E. Grokulsky, D. Emmert and R. van Welden. Emmert, an engineer wen on to Purdue, got his PhD and went to Livermore.". I will pass this on to Kelderhouse and Drag and see if they somehow can find those pictures.
  • 05/29/03 I was recently contacted by the niece ot George Shimotori. See her note.

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Last updated: October 8, 2004