Page 37 - Spring 2018
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 William D. O’Brien, Jr.
Bioacoustics Research Laboratory Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 306 N. Wright Street Urbana, Illinois 61801-2918 USA
Floyd Dunn and His Contributions
There were a few years in the 1960s when Floyd Dunn almost single-hand- edly managed to keep biomedical ultrasound alive.
Floyd Dunn (Figure 1) has been recognized time and time again as a pioneer and one of the most significant scientific leaders internationally to elucidate the mech- anisms by which ultrasound interacts with biological materials. For nearly five de- cades, his full efforts were devoted to the subject; he maintained a steady flow of productive research; he built one of the largest organizations devoted to the field; and he encouraged the development of the field nationally and internationally, be- hind the scenes and through leadership and participation in many different orga- nizations. He was involved in the first major blossoming of biomedical ultrasound in the 1950s. In the 1960s, there were a few years when he almost single-handedly managed to keep the field alive. No single scientist is more responsible for this suc- cess than Floyd Dunn.
 Figure 1. Floyd Dunn on the occasion of accepting the 1998 Gold Medal from the Acoustical Society of America.
Getting to Illinois
Floyd was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on April 14, 1924. He was a child of the Great Depression. Floyd’s fa- ther barely pieced together a living as a watchmaker. His family did not have the money to send him to a uni- versity, which would probably have been the University of Missouri or the University of Kansas. In his second year at Kansas City Junior College, Floyd joined the Navy, but the Navy discovered that Floyd was completely colorblind and discharged him the same
 month he joined (March 1943). That June, Floyd enlisted in the Army where he served for three years on active duty and in the reserves for an additional three years. Not long after he returned from the European theater as a veteran of the Battle of the Bulge, Floyd applied and was accepted into the Department of Elec- trical Engineering at the University of Illinois; his junior college physics teacher had received his physics degree from Illinois and continually claimed (according to Floyd) that the University of Illinois had the very best Department of Electrical Engineering in the country. Floyd thought that his junior college record and the GI Bill (Serviceman’s Readjustment Act of 1944) were what got him accepted at Illinois.
©2018 Acoustical Society of America. All rights reserved. volume 14, issue 1 | Spring 2018 | Acoustics Today | 35

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