Ed N. Sickafus

  • Born: March 7, 1931
  • Died: November 15, 2018
  • Location: Grosse Ile, Michigan

Trenton Chapel-Martenson Family of Funeral Homes

3200 West Rd.
Trenton, MI 48183

Tel. (734) 671-5400

Tribute & Message From The Family

Sickafus, Edward Nathan (Ph.D.), age 87, of Grosse Ile, Michigan, passed away November 15, 2018, due to complications from an accidental fall.
Ed was born March 7, 1931 in St. Louis, Missouri to the late Edward Alton Sickafus and Thelma Marie Ditterline-Sickafus.
Ed is preceded in death by sister Violet Eade. He is survived by his beloved wife, Mary Sue (formerly Gist) Sickafus of 65 years and sons, Kurt and Karl. He leaves two grandchildren, twins Nathan and Natalie Sickafus, step-granddaughter Christina Keller, and niece Diane Holmes.
Ed graduated from Normandy High School, Normandy, Missouri in 1949 and then earned an associate degree from Southwest Baptist College in Bolivar, Missouri in 1952. Ed later earned both baccalaureate and master's degrees at The Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy in Rolla, Missouri, followed by a doctoral degree in physics from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville in 1960. Ed also served part-time as a scientist in the Ordnance Research Laboratory in Charlottesville.
Following graduate school, Ed served as professor of physics at the University of Denver, then joined the research staff of the Ford Motor Company Scientific Laboratory in Dearborn in 1967.
He worked at Ford for 33 years as an experimental physicist and manager (manager of physics department, Ford IC research group in Colorado Springs and the sensors and actuators department).
Ed served as president of the American Vacuum Society, published more than 80 scientific papers and holds 15 patents. Ed also developed an invention (problem solving) methodology known as Unified Structured Inventive Thinking (USIT, published in 1997). Ed taught USIT to Ford engineers and to students worldwide through a company he named NTELLECK.
Ed pursued numerous hobbies including photography, trout fishing, drawing and painting, architectural design (particularly his dream home in Grosse Ile), writing poetry, sign language (translator for the deaf at churches in Denver and Detroit), hiking and backpacking (Boy Scout assistant), spelunking, canoeing, SCUBA diving, sailing, bicycling (Ed completed multiple Michiganders), and international travel.
Memorials in honor of Ed may be made to: The Ed and Mary Sickafus Scholarship Fund at the University of Missouri at Rolla.