In Memory: Anne Marie Eaton, 102

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Anne Marie Eaton died at Hospice Atlanta from natural causes on March 27, 2010. She was 102 years old. 

Ann Marie was a lifelong friend of the Stewart School of ISyE and a strong advocate for education.   She often stressed the importance of learning, stating "No one can ever take an education away from you." She and her husband Paul learned hard lessons of resilience as they migrated to the United States from Nazi Germany in 1938. In fact, her continued learning has allowed her to reinvent herself as mother and wife, methods analyst, import/export manager, Tech faculty wife, college student, gerontology expert, and author.

In 1942, Anne Marie and Paul enrolled in Georgia Tech's evening school to study a new field called industrial engineering. Under the War Manpower Act, Anne Marie studied industrial engineering at Tech for two years while working for companies such as Sears, Lockheed, and Rich's department store.   Paul joined ISyE's faculty in 1948, becoming a Fulbright professor and rising to international prominence in the field. Anne Marie later earned a master's in sociology with a minor in gerontology from Georgia State then returned to Tech in 1987 to study psychology.

Among her numerous achievements, Anne Marie helped start the nation's largest Life Enrichment Center for seniors in DeKalb County, work that led to the Georgia Senate naming her 1999's Distinguished Senior Georgian. She has represented DeKalb and Rockdale counties at a White House Council on Aging and has served as a representative on aging issues to Germany. In the 90's, she established the Paul Eaton Scholarship to support undergraduate students in the Industrial and Systems Engineering School at Georgia Tech.

In 2002, Anne Marie wrote a book on successful aging titled, Anything in Life is a Challenge, based on her own aging process and to assist other still-functioning elderly to understand that "old age is a stage of life just as any other stage in which one can be productive, learn, and pursue numerous goals based on ability, talents, experience, and desires." In the book's last chapter as Anne contemplated medical treatment, she summarized her life:  "During my long life I have learned that there is always some positive thought of escape attached towards the solution of a very difficult problem. I got to thinking that I had a spectacular life behind me.  Actually I had two lives, so different from each other."

A memorial service will be held on April 9, 2010, at 11:00 a.m.. at Oak Grove Methodist Church.  Visitation will follow the service. Anne Marie is survived by a daughter, Clairelis Baxter of Athens; two sons, Charles Eaton of Greer, S.C., and Goetz Eaton of Anderson, S.C.; 11 grandchildren; and 22 great-grandchildren.


  • Workflow Status:Published
  • Created By:Edie Cohen
  • Created:03/30/2010
  • Modified By:Fletcher Moore
  • Modified:10/07/2016


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