INDEPENDENCE, Ohio — Nissim Calderon lived long enough to learn he was named the winner of the rubber chemistry's highest honor — the Charles Goodyear Medal.
But the former Goodyear scientist died in February 2020 before he could be recognized publicly by his peers for receiving the 2020 award.
More than a year has passed since Mr. Calderon died, but the Rubber Division of the American Chemistry Society took time April 28 during its Spring Technical Meeting to celebrate Mr. Calderon's life and accomplishments. Plans to honor him last year were put on hold due to COVID-19 restrictions.
The task of recounting Mr. Calderon's professional life and accomplishments fell to Adel Halasa, who worked with him at Goodyear. And it was a bittersweet moment.
"I feel very, very sad. I am honored that they allowed me to do that," Mr. Halasa said near the end of his hour-long talk about Mr. Calderon. "I feel very humbled. I feel very proud. But I am sad."
Mr. Calderon left his mark on Goodyear and the industry in many ways, Mr. Halasa told in-person and virtual attendees of the 199th Technical Meeting of the Rubber Division in Independence, a Cleveland suburb.
Employed by Goodyear from 1962 to 1998 — when he retired as vice president of corporate research overseeing a staff of 400 — Mr. Calderon was a force for good both within the walls of Goodyear and in the greater rubber community, a man whose accomplishments deserve recognition.