George David Hopson April 9, 1927 – October 23, 2013
George David Hopson
April 9, 1927 – October 23, 2013
George David Hopson, 86, passed away peacefully at his home in Madison, Alabama on Wednesday. He was born in Birmingham, Alabama and graduated from Woodlawn High School in Birmingham. He enlisted in the US Marine Corps and served from 1945-1946. He then attended the University of Alabama where he earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1950. He served as an officer in the US Army from 1951-1953, earning the Bronze Star in Korea. He then returned to the University of Alabama and earned a Master’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1954. He began his engineering career at General Dynamics in Fort Worth, Texas from 1954-1962, then returned home to Alabama to begin a distinguished 45 year career at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville. He held numerous positions at NASA including Fluid Dynamics Branch Chief, Structures and Thermal Branch Chief, Skylab Analysis Lab Director, Space Systems Chief Engineer, Space Transportation Systems Chief Engineer, Space Station Projects Office Manager, Deputy Director for Space Systems, Space Shuttle Main Engine Manager, and NASA Technical Fellow for Propulsion. He received significant recognition throughout his career including the Exceptional Service Award, two Outstanding Leadership Awards, two Presidential Rank Awards, the Distinguished Service Award and induction into the State of Alabama Engineering Hall of Fame. George loved his family and friends; enjoyed being a gentleman cattle farmer and gardening; and attentively watched over all of his pets. George was preceded in death by his parents Nell and Arthur; beloved wife Marguerite; and his brother, Bill.
George is survived by his sons, Charles (Phyllis), Bill (Rhonda) and George Jr.; his daughter, Lee Collins (Tom); brother, Art (Faye); grandchildren, Justin, Matt, Jennifer Collins and Tia Hopson, nephews, Tom, David, Richard and Dana, and nieces, Dale and Ellen.
Visitation was held Sunday October 27, 2013 at Laughlin Service Funeral Home with the service immediately following in the chapel. Burial will be in Maple Hill Cemetery, Inc.