Robert T. Dann, 89
CONCORD, N.H. — The afterlife just got sillier, more joyful, and a whole lot smarter with the passing of Robert Treat Dann, 89, formerly of Harrison, Maine, on Monday, Feb. 6, 2017.
Born in New Haven, Conn., on Aug. 1, 1927, the son of Katherine (Haywood) and Walter Dann, and predeceased by brother Alan Dann, “Bob” lived life as one big wonderful adventure fueled by both his love of God and of science. With many notable accomplishments throughout his life’s journey, his “best break” was to marry Marion Jane Jack, his loving wife of almost 66 years. After entering Cornell University at age 16, Bob put his studies on hold to serve in the U.S. Army as a cryptographic technician, decoding classified messages in Alaska. Returning to Cornell he graduated class of 1949 with a degree in chemistry. He discovered his true vocational passion working for Hoffman LaRoche, Inc., and later Abbott Laboratories as a marketing research analyst.
Realizing that a new invention — the computer — could be used to analyze marketing data, Bob started Pharmatech Systems in 1968, in collaboration with M.I.T. Professor Arnold Amstutz. Pharmatech Systems was one of the first companies to provide an integrated database for use by pharmaceutical marketers. Never one to sit still for long, Bob’s career path led the family to Connecticut, New Jersey, Illinois, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey (again) and Maine, totaling twelve moves over 35 years.
Encouraged by life’s endless possibilities, Bob would answer, “Why not?” when confronted with “Why?” It was an attitude that propelled him to climb to the summit of many mountains, where the physical vastness matched his ceaseless contemplation. When he wasn’t making people laugh with a clever joke, pun, or silly physical comedy, he was using his research skills to uncover family history, making every ancestor count. Genealogy turned out to be something he excelled at and he eventually found himself hired to do it for others.
Before moving to Havenwood in Concord, N.H., Bob and Jane enjoyed 28 glorious years in Harrison. While there, Bob was an active member of Christ Episcopal Church in the nearby town of Norway. Bob believed love to be the underlying energy in all creation. He wrote; “Where love is, our lives grow sweeter. Reach out, spread love, spread joy!” Bob was a man true to his word. He was deeply loved by his wife Jane Dann; son David Dann and companion Laurie Knoop of White Sulphur Springs, N.Y., son and daughter-in-love Paul and Patti Dann of Hopkinton, N.H., son and daughter-in-love Tim and Angela Dann of New Canaan, Conn.; daughter and son-in-love Elizabeth Dann and Joe Quinn of Haverhill, Mass.; and a bounty of grandchildren and great-grandchildren, reaching out and spreading love and joy every day.
A funeral service will be held Saturday, Feb. 18, at 3 p.m., at Grace Episcopal Church, Concord, N.H., with a reception to follow at Havenwood Heritage Heights, also in Concord.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Robert T. Dann’s name to Christ Episcopal Church, 35 Paris St., Norway, ME 04268, or to the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund, 34 Washington St., Suite 200, Wellesley Hills, MA 02481.
Bob’s family would like to thank the wonderful staff at Melody Lane, Havenwood, for their help in making him comfortable and happy in his final months.