I have the sad news that Parker Alford died on Friday March 13th. He was in the last hours of an 8-day cruise, with his family, along the Pacific Coast of Mexico, when he slumped in his chair before dinner. The ship's doctor arrived within a minute but he was gone. He would have been 84 in a few weeks. He will be cremated in San Diego and his ashes will be sent home. A celebration of his life will be held at his home in Comox in a month or two. I shall inform you of the plans for any such celebration.
Parker's biggest contribution to TRIUMF came twenty five years ago when I invited him to spend a few summer months at our Laboratory. It was at this time that Parker suggested using our proton spectrometer as a recoil spectrometer to measure the neutron and proton strength functions. This was a hot topic in nuclear physics at the time because the Gamow-Teller neutron strength function was believed to reveal quark degrees of freedom in the nucleus. Until then many laboratories had pursued neutron time-of-flight systems to laboriously measure the strength functions. With Parker;s suggestion and with our HRS spectrometer, TRIUMF rapidly cleaned up this area of science. Parker and Brian Spice wrote the definitive review article on the results, in Advances In Nuclear Physics. More recently Parker became associated with the work on trapped atoms with John Behr and his colleagues. The Alfords, at their home in Comox, were very hospitable to many TRIUMF visitors especially Ashery and Yavin from Israel and the Wilkinsons.