Well, this morning, I stumbled across the name of the dead toxicologist, all unexpectedly, going through the materials from the News & Pubs faculty files donation we received last month. In the folder labeled "Aitchison, John P., PhD" I found the following typewritten document:
John P. Aitchisonwith the handwritten note:
3710 SW Caldrew Street, Portland
born: August 18, 1934
associate professor, department of clinical pathology, chief of toxicology
found in his office at approx 6:20 this morning by a lab technicianThere are also some mysteriously vague phone message notes included in the folder, and the entire obituary page from the Wednesday, April 6, 1983 Oregonian--which makes NO mention whatsoever of Aitchison's death. Hmmmm...
A search of the online Social Security Death Index is not much more informative:
NAME: JOHN AITCHISON
BIRTH: 18 Aug 1934
DEATH: Apr 1983
LAST RESIDENCE: (not specified)
LAST BENEFIT: (none specified)
As it turns out, Aitchison had been born in New Westminster, BC, and educated at UBC, UC Berkeley and UC San Francisco. He joined the University of Oregon Medical School in 1969 as an assistant professor and had achieved the rank of associate professor in 1973. He had been considered an authority in industrial and forensic toxicology.
He is buried in Crescent Grove Cemetery in Tigard, Oregon; the cemetery register lists him as a Mason.
I can only begin to wonder whether he was the victim, inadvertent or intentional, of the substances he studied. The mystery lingers for the next researcher...