George Vrabel (1909 - 1993)
May 22, 2007
Date: Tue, 6 Apr 2004 12:58:04 -0500
I happened upon the site of (LASR) Midway Labs by accident. It was really interesting to see a picture of my dad included with the mug shots. I was fortunate enough to attend his retirement party as a young boy.
George Vrabel was a photographer for a number of years and often talked about the great times and friends during his tenure there. Unfortunately, dad passed away in 1993 doing what he loved best. It was May 22 and dad was in his garden when struck by a fatal heart attack. He was truly a special person to his family and is greatly missed even now. George's wife Ann passed away in 2002.
The surviving family includes three sons and their families. One of his sons passed away in 1997. I would really love to know if anyone has any memories of dad.
Thank you very much:
Date: Thu, 08 APR 2004 22:26:15 -0400
I did remember your father and I know of others who knew him much better. Your dad took all these mug shots and he also photographed layouts for electronic boards, many of them used in balloon borne instruments as well as space instruments. When the photo lab was cleaned out a few years ago, the mug shots were discovered and they were scanned by some of the people still there at the time (Kelderhouse, Drag, Pyle). They send me the electronic version of the pictures and I posted them on the web. We had a real ball for several months trying to identify everyone.
I was at LASR from 1961-1966 and again from 1978-1990. I definitely overlapped with your dad the first time I was at LASR. I am not sure about the second time. What year did he retire?
I will pass this reply which includes your email to a few others and let them reminisce about knowing your father.
Thanks for contacting us.
Date: Fri, 9 APR 2004 08:45:44 -0500
Thanks for forwarding this, Jacques.
I remember George very well. He used to talk to me a lot. He liked to collect herbs for various remedies and he would tell me what herb was good for what physical problem. I'm not surprised that he was working in his garden when he passed away.
George was definitely a special person.
Date: Fri, 9 APR 2004 15:30:24 -0500
Date: Thu, 15 APR 2004 14:58:11 -0500
I remember your dad and his dark room. He once took me into the room and showed me the complete process. Personally I never got into photography but enjoyed his company. His darkroom was close to the shop and he liked to hang out there and swap stories with Al Hoteko. If I remember correctly he also liked to roller-skate.
Date: Thu, 15 APR 2004 20:12:29 +0000
I also spent time talking with your dad when I was at LASR (1963-1998). I remember he would talk about his previous job as a medical photographer at Billings Hospital. His old photo lab was converted into an office/lab about 10(?) years ago.
Date: Mon, 19 APR 2004 14:32:37 -0500
I have received some e-mails regarding my dad and his work at LASR. It has been very gratifying to know that he was remembered in such a positive manner. I really appreciate your taking the time to spread my message. As a young man as is the case with many youths, we did not really know what kind of work dad was engaged in. Hope to hear more in the future.
Date: Mon, 19 APR 2004 19:05:49 -0400
Ron - You are very welcome. Everyone at LASR was essential to the success of the research we were conducting - from the photographer to the engineer to the scientists. My own Ph.D. thesis work utilized many circuit boards which I am sure your father produced from the layout done by the engineers. I could not have obtained my degree without the help of these people.
If you do not mind, I will put your letter and a few responses on the LASR website to share with others in the future.
Thanks again for contacting us.
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