David Chleck, a chemist and co-founder of Waltham-based Panametrics, Inc., has died at his home in Florida. He was 90.
Chleck, who was born in 1926 to Eastern-European Jewish immigrants in Bronx, New York, gained entry into a joint honors program at Townsend Harris High School and The City College of New York, where he studied chemistry. His studies were interrupted for two years by World War II, during which he served in the U.S. Navy and trained as a sonar operator on submarines. In 1960, Chleck co-founded Panametrics, Inc., a manufacturer of testing and process-control instrumentation. With over 1,100 employees, and offices located around the globe, the company was headquartered in the former manufacture of the Waltham Watch Company. Panametrics was sold to General Electric in 2002.
Chleck authored over fifty scientific papers and was the holder of several patents in the field of humidity sensors and their manufacturing methods. A lover of history, cars, and dixieland jazz music, he was respected and loved by employees, friends, and family alike.
Married to Gladys (Semlock) for 65 years, the couple had two daughters, Mara Levine and Risa Chleck, and two grandsons, Ross (Dana) Levine and Justin Levine. He is also survived by his nephew, Richard (Sara) Pardo, and great-nephews, Jonathan and Samuel Pardo. He was the brother of the late Joan Pardo.
A founder of Temple Beth David in Westwood, Chleck was also a longtime member and officer at Temple Ohabei Shalom in Brookline. He was elected to membership in the Cosmos Club in Washington, D.C. for original and meritorious work in science.
Together with family members, he founded the Chleck Family Foundation, a philanthropic vehicle that supports institutions in higher education, healthcare, and medical research. The foundation’s partnerships include a research fellowship at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston as well as a scholarship program at The City College of New York.
Services at Sharon Memorial Park, 40 Dedham St., Sharon (gather at rear of administration building), Sunday, August 6, 2017 at 11:45 am. Memorial observance at the home of Mara Levine on Sunday, 2-4 and 6-8 pm. In lieu of flowers, donations in David’s memory may be made to a charity of choice.