George Bennett Tyler, Jr., born February 21, 1942, was at home following a long illness when he departed this life on November 20, 2019. He leaves behind memories full of friendship and the joy of life in the hearts of those he loved.
George was the son of George B. Tyler, Sr. and Elizabeth Gilliam Tyler. He grew up on Linden Farm in Orange County, Virginia, where his appreciation for open spaces and his passion for life and good work was formed. He was smart and talented, gentle and caring, and delighted in using his hands to create things serviceable and beautiful. A metallurgist by training, he knew how to blend the properties of whatever was at hand; iron, wood, damaged race cars, flower gardens, or culinary ingredients, and transform them into something that delighted him and those who had the privilege of sharing life with George. He was also an old school photographer who depended on his eye for detail and the natural beauty of patterns and colors to enhance his professional and avocational photographic works.
He attended Woodberry Forest School and then entered the U.S. Navy’s submarine service. Following his military service, he worked in research for Reynolds Metals Company for 30 years and then as a restoration specialist for the Science Museum of Virginia for 10 years. The highlight of his career was his work aboard the Aluminaut, a deep-sea submersible. There he experienced the thrill of ocean exploration throughout the Bahamas and along the coast of South America. Later he headed the restoration team that brought the Aluminaut to the Science Museum of Virginia, where it remains today.
He is survived by his wife and companion, Fay, his son Ben, daughter-in-law Alison, grandchildren Jordan Price (Joshua), and Sarah Tyler, stepson David Heist, and brothers Dick and Hoge. He was predeceased by his son John. He will be missed by his family and the many friends he seemed to make wherever he went.
A memorial service to celebrate George’s life will be scheduled in the spring when the Virginia bluebells are in bloom.
In lieu of flowers, George would like it if you made a contribution to Caring for Creatures, 352 Sanctuary Lane, Palmyra, VA 22963. He would like it even more if knowing him inspired you to love life, practice appreciation and compassion, and seek to make this world a kinder place for the people and creatures who come into yours.