Dr. George Ware Obituary, 2010

Dr. George Ware of Batavia Dr. George Ware, 86, passed away July 4, 2010, at Holy Cross Hospital, Chicago. He was born April 27, 1924, in Avery, Okla., the son of Charles and Mildred (nee Aschelman) Ware. Dr. George Ware grew up in Norman, Okla., receiving B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Oklahoma. He received a Ph.D. degree in forest ecology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He attributed his interest in trees and urban landscapes to early awareness of the need for shade, greenery, and other landscape amenities in the often drought-plagued towns of Oklahoma, Kansas, and other areas of the Great Plains. He taught botany, ecology, dendrology, and conservation at universities in Oklahoma and Louisiana. He joined the staff at the Morton Arboretum in 1968 as Dendrologist, becoming the Research Director in 1978. He retired in 1995 but continued his work as Research Associate at the Arboretum until his 85th birthday. His special research areas were selection and development of better urban trees, particularly those that can tolerate soil adversities. He has developed numerous hybrid Asian elms that resemble American elms but are tolerant of Dutch elm disease. He has also developed new hybrid maples, planetrees, poplars and mulberries that show promise as trees for use in towns and cities. He has made five trips to China and three to the former Soviet Union seeking new trees for American cities. In the fall of 1990, he led a group of Morton Arboretum botanists and horticulturists on a plant exploration trip to northern China, collecting seeds and specimens. Numerous contacts were established with Chinese botanists and foresters. Beginning in 1990, seed lots of elm species new to North America were received yearly greatly enlarging the Arboretum’s elm collection. In 1995, he accompanied a USDA-sponsored expedition to China, seeking additional information on elms. Dr. Ware is a recipient of a Special Achievement Award from the National Arbor Day Foundation and a Gold Seal Award from the National Council of State Garden Clubs. In 1994, he received the American Forests’ Urban Forestry Research Award. In 1997, he received the Hutchinson Medal from the Chicago Botanic Garden. In 1998, he received the Norman J. Colman Award from the American Nursery and Landscape Association. Also, the Illinois Arborist Association presented him its highest honor, an Award of Merit. In 2005, he received from Openlands its Conservation Leadership Award. In 2006 he was appointed Honorary Director for Openlands. Dr. Ware was awarded the L.C. Chadwick Award for Arboricultural Research by the International Society of Arboriculture in 2008. In 2000, his biography was included in the Millennium Edition of Who’s Who in America; it has been included in subsequent editions. In 2001, he was presented an Award of Merit, the highest honor of the American Public Gardens Association. In 2002, he was awarded the Liberty Hyde Bailey Award, the highest honor of the American Horticultural Society. He is a Past-President of the Illinois Arborist Association. His numerous publications deal primarily with the selection and development of “tough trees for tough places,” with an emphasis on the importance of soils, root systems, and geographic origins of trees. He had an enduring interest in developing better trees for towns and cities of the Midwest and Great Plains. His article “Trees” appeared in the recently published The Encyclopedia of Chicago. He is survived by his wife, June (nee Gleason); sons, Charles David (Constance) of Batavia, Daniel of Burr Ridge, Patrick (Lisa) of Loveland, Ohio, and John (Irasema) Ware of Batavia; grandchildren, Jessica, Alexis and Kevin; and a sister, Geraldine Fisher of Medicine Park, Okla. A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. Friday, July 9, at United Methodist Church of Batavia, 8 N. Batavia Ave., Batavia, IL. Visitation will be held from 1 p.m.until the time of the service. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be directed to the Morton Arboretum Development Office Tribute Program, 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL 60532-1293. For information, Moss Family Funeral Home, 630-879-7900 or www.mossfuneral.com.
Source:  Chicago Suburban Daily Herald on July 7, 2010

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