Grant Willson and a Drunk Driver

I just got back from visiting Grant Willson in the hospital here in Austin. One week ago, while driving to pick his wife up at the airport, he was hit head-on by a drunk driver.

Almost everybody working in the field of microlithography knows of Grant Willson. While at IBM he invented chemically amplified resists and has subsequently received every award I can think of for that work, including SPIE’s Frits Zernike Award for Microlithography, our field’s highest honor. For more than a decade he has been teaching at the University of Texas at Austin and his irreplaceable leadership in the education of scores of students has produced results that may even eclipse his scientific contributions. For those of us lucky enough to know Grant personally, he is affable, giving, and a man of the highest possible integrity.

The accident banged him up badly, crushing parts of his hip. When I saw him last Thursday, less than two days after the accident, he was in good spirits, but in obvious pain. Today he was much better, and he should be heading home soon (in typical Willson fashion, ahead of schedule). The hope is that after 2 – 3 months of physical therapy (learning how to walk again) he’ll be right as rain.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, Grant.

2 thoughts on “Grant Willson and a Drunk Driver”

  1. Grant,

    Please accept my sincerest best wishes for a speedy recovery. If there is anything I can do for you during that time, please do not hesitate to call on me.

    All the best,

    Chuck Szmanda

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