SILVER SPRING — On May 10, 2020, E.F. Greenleaf passed peacefully at his home in Riderwood Village, just 41 days short of his 101st birthday. Born June 21, 1919 in Milford, MA, Elmer excelled in academics: won a citywide spelling championship in grade school; member of the Newton High School Honor Society; and attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on a scholarship.
In 1941, he graduated from MIT with a degree in chemical engineering. He spent WW2 working at Edgewood Arsenal on chemical weapon issues, then on the critical development of synthetic rubber. After the War, Elmer worked at the Navy Dept. in Washington, DC to create durable non-skid decks for ships.
While walking to lunch from the Navy Yard, Elmer was hailed by his former MIT chemistry professor who recruited him for the newly formed Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). Elmer spent the next 30 years at the AEC primarily on classified work.
In 1981, Elmer retired to pursue his lifelong hobby of securities investment. His second career as an Investment Counselor was some of his happiest years.
Elmer will be remembered for his tireless devotion to his five children, in particular their education and swimming careers. He became an accredited swim meet official, ultimately becoming a highly regarded referee and President of the Montgomery County Swim League (MCSL). In his free time, Elmer earned a Red Cross Water Safety Instructor (WSI) certificate and spent many years helping challenged children and adults learn to swim, and assisted with the swim portions of the Special Olympics in Montgomery County, Md.
Mr. Greenleaf was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years, Martha Gazella Greenleaf. He leaves behind five children, their spouses and 12 grandchildren. Contributions in his memory may be made to “The Arc-Montgomery County,” an organization that supports adults with disabilities. Funeral services and burial at Gate of Heaven are private.