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Victor E. McGee

Sharon, Vt. — Victor E. McGee, 77, Emeritus Professor of Applied Statistics at the Amos Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth College, died peacefully in his home with family near on Sunday, Oct. 6, 2013, in Sharon, Vt., of prostate cancer.

Vic was born in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, on Oct. 31, 1935, the son of Alfred Victor and Winifred Barton McGee. He attended Merchiston School and Maritzburg College and earned his Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Geography as well as University Education Diploma at the University of Natal in 1956. Vic was awarded the Elsie Ballot Fellowship to Cambridge University in England where he earned Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees in Geodesy, in 1958 and 1962, respectively. In 1959, he won the Educational Testing Service Psychometric Fellowship to Princeton University where he earned his PhD in Psychometrics in 1962.

Vic’s first teaching job was as a math teacher at Estcourt High School in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. His first visit to America was in 1958, during a break from Cambridge, when he worked as a Summer Camp Counselor in the Catskill Mountains of New York.

In 1961, while working in Research and Statistics at ETS in Princeton, N.J., Vic met Marie (Lambert) McGee of Iselin, Pa. They married in her hometown in 1962 and moved to Champaign, Ill., where Vic was a Research Associate at the University of Illinois.

From 1962 until 1969, he was Assistant and Associate Professor in the Psychology Department at Dartmouth College in Hanover, N.H., where he and Marie raised their three children, Beth, Bill and Ed. He began his tenured position at the Tuck School of Business as Associate Professor of Applied Statistics in 1969, attaining full professorship in 1972. He was a Foundation Professor at the International Management Program, International University of Japan (IUJ), from 1988 to 1994. He was also an Adjunct Professor of Earth Science at Dartmouth College from 1989 until 1995.

Vic was a pioneer in Dartmouth’s technological development, and worked with Dartmouth President John G. Kemeny and Professor Tom Kurtz in the early days of BASIC. His Dartmouth manual “The Multivariate Package of BASIC Programs” was published in three editions and used by generations of students. His recent research interests included vector analysis, forecasting methodologies and neural networks. Among his major publications are Principles of Statistics: Traditional & Bayesian, 1971; Forecasting: Methods and Applications (Second Edition) with Spyros Makridakis and Steven C. Wheelwright, 1984; and The Growth of College Endowments, The Common Fund Press, with J. Peter Williamson, 1993.

Over the years, Vic and family journeyed to Switzerland, Turkey, Ireland, England and elsewhere, as well as back to South Africa, allowing for reunions with the McGees there. From 1988 to 1994, Vic and Marie enjoyed visits to Urasa, Japan, teaching at IUJ. Here at home, Vic loved visits to Maine and Colorado.

An avid athlete, Vic played cricket and rugby in his youth. In later years, he was a tennis player with a wicked serve and a runner who completed many marathons including the 56-mile Comrades Marathon in South Africa.

Following his retirement in 1999, Vic remained a loyal fan of local high school soccer and hockey programs and volunteered as a math teacher at Sharon Academy and computer programming teacher at Thetford Elementary School.

He will be remembered by his many students for his elegant teaching style, his easy smile, and his passionate dedication to helping anyone during countless office hours, some of which were held around the track at Dartmouth. His standards were extremely high, and his integrity and loyalty to Dartmouth and Tuck were widely recognized and respected.

Vic was predeceased by his elder brother Owen Selby McGee, of Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa; his parents and father-in-law, James P. Lambert. He is survived by his wife, Marie of Sharon; his children and grandchildren: daughter Beth McGee and grandson Jackson of East Thetford, Vt., son Bill McGee, daughter-in-law Lisa McGee and grandson Finn of Denver, Colo., and grandson Jonathan of Lake Worth, Fla., son Ed McGee of Sharon; and his younger brother, The Rev. Dr. Terence B. McGee of Durban, South Africa; his mother-in-law, Sara L. Lambert; sisters- and brothers-in-law and many nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews in South Africa, England, and throughout the US.

He will forever be remembered for his favorite walks in Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine, and in Ireland, England and South Africa. His guiding principle was the Cambridge University Motto: “Let your mind wander over all things in heaven and on earth, unhindered by knowledge and unhampered by experience.” With a favorite Zulu phrase meaning “go well”, his family bids him a safe and peaceful rest: Hamba Kahle.

A Service in Thanksgiving of his Life will be held at the Sharon Congregational Church in Sharon, Vt, at 11 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 12, with a reception directly following at the Inn at Idlewood in Sharon. That evening, a bonfire celebration will take place at the family’s home at 1135 Fay Brook Road in Sharon.

Memorial contributions may be made to The Sharon Academy, P.O. Box 207, Sharon, VT 05065 Attn: Michael Livingston or to The Green Mountain Club, 4711 Waterbury-Stowe Road, Waterbury Center, VT 05677.

Condolences may be expressed in an online guestbook at www.knightfuneralhomes.com.