Memorial services for Chester Franklin Low, 90, Lawrence will be held at 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on, Saturday, August 24, 2013 at the Smith Center at Brandon Woods at Alvamar in Lawrence. He died Sunday, July 14, 2013 at Lawrence Memorial Hospital.
Chet was born November 20, 1922 in New York, NY the son of Harry and Eva (Levy) Low. He spent his youth in New York. He graduated from Hunter Model High School as World War II was beginning.
Chet recognized the evils of fascism at an early age. After turning 18 he enlisted in the RCAF and was serving in Canada by early 1941. He was returned to the US upon US entry into the war. Chet flew as a submarine spotting pilot for the Civil Air Patrol and then as a navigator with the USAAF. He ended the war serving on a B-24 heavy night bomber in the Pacific. On May 5 1946, after a six week courtship he married his wife of 67 years Helen (AKA Peggy) Fisher, who was serving as an Army nurse. Chet left the military to attend college shortly after his marriage. He remained active in the USAF Reserve as a navigator until finally retiring from the military in 1972.
Chet received both his BA and his MA in History from the University of Texas Austin. He then continued his studies at Princeton and was working towards his Ph.D. when a job offer from the CIA lured him away. He spent the remainder of his professional career alternating between the CIA and the State Department, where he made lifelong friends. While most of his career was spent as a research analyst for the CIA, one State Department assignment was a three year stint in Lyons, France. Chet returned from France a permanent Francophile and oenophile. Chet retired from government service in 1977. His ended his career as the head of the National Intelligence Survey program for Eastern Europe, Western Europe and the USSR.
He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa; the University of Texas and Princeton Alumni Associations, and numerous other charitable organizations.
He is survived by his wife Peggy Low; three sons, Ronald B. Low, Rodney D. Low, Roger D. Low; one granddaughter; six grandsons; one great granddaughter; and three great grandsons. He was preceded in death by his daughter, Rebecca A. Low on November 19, 1958; and brother, Lawrence “Larry” Low in 2008.
The family suggests memorials in his name to Doctors without Borders and may be sent in care of Warren-McElwain Mortuary.