James Rayford Nix

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By The Staff

NIX – James Rayford “Ray” Nix, age 70, passed away suddenly May 8, 2008, at the Los Alamos Medical Center from complications arising from an injury sustained while traveling in Southeast Asia.

He was born Feb. 18, 1938 in Natchitoches, La., to Edna and Joe Nix. He lived there until moving to Pittsburgh to attend Carnegie-Mellon University in 1956, where he soon discovered his academic passion for physics. He also served as president of the local Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity chapter.

After graduating in 1960 he began graduate studies in theoretical nuclear physics at the University of California, Berkeley. While living in International House, he met Sally Ann Wood, and they were married Aug. 19, 1961. Upon completing his Ph.D. in 1964, the couple lived in Copenhagen for a year where he had a post-doctoral fellowship at the Niels Bohr Institute. Subsequently, he continued his research at the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory in California.

In 1968, Ray and Sally moved to Los Alamos, where he worked at the Los Alamos National Laboratory until his retirement in 1998. He served as group leader of the Theoretical Nuclear Physics Group, T-9, from 1977 until its dissolution in 1990 when he transitioned to T-2 until his retirement.

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