Dr. George Chi-Chien Feng, 91, passed away peacefully in his sleep on April 28, 2023, surrounded by his loved ones.
The oldest of seven siblings, George was born on November 11, 1931, in Shanghai, China. He received his Bachelor of Science from the prestigious National Taiwan University before arriving in the United States in January, 1959 with only $200 in cash to his name. Through his work ethic and natural affability, George found a job as an engineering assistant and received a scholarship to the University of Minnesota, where he went on to obtain his PhD in astronautical engineering in 1965.
George began his career as a professor at the University of Illinois before his work with Lockheed Martin and Boeing brought him to Huntsville, Alabama then Houston, Texas. During his career, he mentored many engineers and made immense contributions to the space industry, including his work on the first manned orbital flight of the Space Shuttle. George was an avid bridge player, traveler, and cherisher of the sweeter things in life—namely, Blue Bell ice cream and apple pastries.
Never one to seek accolades or limelight, George pursued a life of quiet accomplishment. If his humility ever wavered, it was only in the pride he felt in his family. His gentle tenacity will be lovingly remembered by his wife of almost 60 years, Pi-Lien; his children, Jane and Ven, and daughter-in-law, Dorothea; grandchildren and partners Josh & Minz, Sarah & Marco and Jacob; and great granddaughter Misha; surviving siblings Henry, Steve, James and Janet; and many dear friends. Though he has passed, the compassion and generosity he inspired will live on in all those who knew him.
A celebration of life will be held at Crowder Funeral Home, 111 East Medical Center Boulevard, Webster, TX 77598 on Tuesday, May 2 at 2:45pm. In lieu of flowers, please send donations to the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Foundation (https://www.aiaa.org/get-involved) to support the education of the next generation of aerospace students.