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News & Blogs: In Memoriam

A few words to the memory of Tony Montgomery

lundi, 23 mars 2020   (9 Comments)
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Tony Montgomery passed away on 17 January 2020. Tony taught Physics at LGB for almost thirty years, from 1968 to 1996, and acted as Head of Department for several of those years. Alan Sharpe, a close colleague and friend writes the following:
 


Tony and I spent most of our working lives at Ecolint, LGB, and it falls to me to give some recognition to the role he played and to note the contributions that he made to the school and to those who worked with him. 

The history and good reputation of our school lies more with the teachers and the students than with Boards and buildings. Tony, as Head of the Physics Department was one such teacher. Many of us, both colleagues and students, owe him a debt of gratitude  for his example and deep understanding of Physics. Indeed Tony's choice of subject says much about the man, clear analytical thinking, uncompromising in search of truth and demanding of the best, not only from those that he worked with but certainly from himself. 

Those students who worried about the scrutiny of their examination answers may not have realised how much we feared his appraisal of our submitted examination papers! Woe betide careless or ambiguous wording and as for a wrong solution ... These aspects of his personality could have led one to see him as formal, rather authoritative and distant man but to those of us who knew him better we saw another side. He took a very real pleasure in the achievements of his pupils. Many of those who returned to see him recognised the value of his instruction and of his learning. Whilst rather unforgiving  of the merely lazy he showed compassion to those in need and readily gave his help. 

Also many would not have instantly recognised "Monty" when relaxed and in holiday mode. He, together with his family and friends would linger over long meals and tall stories far into the night. The innate humour would come through and those awful puns he made would become worse!

Another major contribution he made to the school that must be mentioned, was the time and influence that Tony gave to the work of our Pension Fund. Many of us "oldies" have to give him thanks for all that effort.

Tony and Morna, who is also a well remembered geography teacher within the Foundation, retired back home to Northern Ireland but kept in touch with those of us who remain. Now, unfortunately, we have to give our thoughts to Morna and her two sons, Peter and Stephen, at this sad and difficult time. A man of many parts and much ability, I am proud to have worked with him and to have shared those many years - and I am certain that I am not alone with these sentiments.

Alan Sharpe, colleague and friend.

Comments...

Christy Agbavwe says...
Posted jeudi, 16 avril 2020
Farewell Mr Montgomery. Thank you for teaching me physics.
Allen Brown says...
Posted lundi, 13 avril 2020
My time working with Tony, Alan, Pat Crook, and Frank Lunt was the pinnacle of my teaching career. I'm certain that I drove them to distraction at times, but all were especially tolerant of my inexperience, inadequacies, and outright silliness. Tony was analytically meticulous, insightful, complete, yet flexible in his approaches to teaching and managing the physics department, and he set high standards for himself and those around him. Nobody wanted to let him down. He also had a razor-sharp wit that could surface entirely unexpectedly and in the most bizarre contexts. It characterized his quick mind and an offbeat sense of humour that was such a contrast to the "official" Montgomery persona. I learned more from him about teaching physics than I can say, and I remain in his debt. His kindnesses to me and my family are not forgotten. My thoughts are with Morna, Peter, and Stephen.
Emily Hanson (Mason) says...
Posted samedi, 11 avril 2020
I'm sorry to hear of Mr Montgomery's passing. Both he and Mrs. Montgomery were among the best teachers I had at Ecolint, and I've thought of them with some regularity over the years, usually with gratitude. My condolences to his family and friends. He will be missed.
Nicola Peers (Higham) says...
Posted samedi, 11 avril 2020
Sad news. Mr Montgomery, Mr Sharpe, Mr Anthony - I remember you all, although I will happily admit to never having understood a word of physics. Hope all are staying safe.
Leila A. Hans (Belkora) says...
Posted vendredi, 10 avril 2020
I owe so much to Tony Montgomery, having gone on to study physics and astrophysics. As you say, Alan, he demanded the best of everyone, not least himself, and his instruction was absolutely clear and concise. He gave me the best foundation one could hope for. As for his sense of humor... I'll never forget the deadpan way he approached me and my lab bench-mates one day to ask, "What's short, sharp and brown?" The answer, of course, was "Three quarters of the physics department." An inside joke! My sympathies to his family and to all who miss him.
Leila A. Hans (Belkora) says...
Posted vendredi, 10 avril 2020
I owe so much to Tony Montgomery, having gone on to study physics and astrophysics. As you say, Alan, he demanded the best of everyone, not least himself, and his instruction was absolutely clear and concise. He gave me the best foundation one could hope for. As for his sense of humor... I'll never forget the deadpan way he approached me and my lab bench-mates one day to ask, "What's short, sharp and brown?" The answer, of course, was "Three quarters of the physics department." An inside joke! My sympathies to his family and to all who miss him.
Burton Melnick says...
Posted jeudi, 9 avril 2020
Thank you for your memories, Alan, Eric, and Robin. I didn’t have a lot of direct contact with Tony, but I delighted in listening to him at staff meetings. You could always count on his candor and his intellectual honesty. It came so naturally to him to call a spade a spade that he seemed puzzled as to why other people were using euphemisms. He wasn't at all afraid of saying that the emperor had no clothes. I don’t think he even realized that other people were.
Eric Anthony says...
Posted samedi, 28 mars 2020
I was so very sad to learn of the death of Tony. I worked very closely, and harmoniously with him for a period of 30 years. I totally endorse the words that his colleague Alan has written above. He has captured the very essence of Tony. Tony was perhaps above all a remarkable physicist, and he was a perfectionist in the way he passed on his knowledge and deep understanding of Physics to hisstudents. He was also a man who was tender, kind and compassionate, but this side of him was not evident to all. Iextend my deepest sympathy to Morna, Peter and Stephen. Eric Anthony.
Robin Dormer says...
Posted vendredi, 27 mars 2020
Thank you for posting this, Alan. I remember him well--he saw me through "A" Level Physics. He was certainly demanding, but that brought its own rewards (in my case a better grade at "A" Level than I had dared to hope). I remember his classes quite well, and i do remember also his sense of humour. I am sorry he is gone. Robin Dormer [LGB 1969]

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