MEREDITH – Dr. Harold Clifford “Hal” Lyon, Jr., 84, of Bear Island, died in a boating accident November 9, 2019, on Lake Winnipesaukee.
Hal was born on April 26, 1935, in New Brunswick NJ, son to the late Harold C. and Myrtle “Toni” (Briggs) Lyon. As the son of an Airborne Infantry officer, he grew up an Army brat in 10 cities and posts.
Hal was a proud West Point graduate with the Class 1958. He received his appointment to West Point from then Senator John Kennedy.
Hal was a typically gung ho candidate and Army officer serving as an Airborne Army Ranger and a prolific writer of articles on creative military tactics (Invisible Infiltrators, Man against Tank and Cancer Action, amongst others) and led establishment of the first Recondo School in Ft. Campbell KY and helped with the integration of James Meredith into Ol’Miss and to carry Governor Wallace off the steps of the University of Alabama.
Hal received his Masters in Psychology from George Washington University in 1965 and Doctorate in Education at the University of Massachusetts a few years later.
Shortly after leaving the military, he became Assistant to the President of Ohio University followed by a political appointment in the Johnson Administration as Assistant Deputy Commissioner of Education where he helped shape the Great Society’s new educational agenda. He subsequently held high level appointments in Washington DC as Associate Commissioner of Education for Libraries and Educational Technology where he was Program Director for the creation of the successful children’s TV program “Sesame Street”.
Hal taught psychology at GW University and Antioch and authored numerous books on psychology and the outdoors.
His third career after leaving the government was in the field of medical education and multimedia development at Dartmouth Medical University where he held a faculty position for 10 years developing and evaluating multimedia for teaching clinical reasoning and diagnosis. Many award-winning programs ensued for best educational multimedia programs. Hal was awarded a Fulbright scholarship which took him to beloved Germany supporting Medical Information Science
Hal’s final Fulbright teaching engagement was in Switzerland the spring of 2019 at 84 years of age.
Hal grew up on Lake Winnipesaukee with his uncle and cousins while his father was overseas in WWII. Fishing and hunting were an avid occupation. In fact, Hal won the Maryland State Turkey Calling championship and German hunting friends called him Dr. Truthahn (Turkey in German) and would ask him to make turkey calls and tell stories of hunting turkeys during traditional German Hunting Celebrations (Turkeys are not native to Europe).
In the 1960’s after having a family, he began to come back each summer to Lake Winnipesaukee with his sons to fish and enjoy the lake at the same place his family stayed in WWII and finally purchasing a place on Bear Island in 1979.
Hal was known for his wide-ranging eclectic hobbies and his grit, determination and drive. He was gregarious by nature and always distracted with engaging topics and invited more friends to be together than his house could handle. He wrote a well-known book on fishing within the Lakes Region called “Angling in the Smile of the Great Spirit”. He spent much time giving presentations throughout the region and providing copies of his book that focused on the lives and techniques of a number of “Master Anglers” of which he was in good company. Fishing and hunting were passions he experienced with friends and family. Hal was an active member of the New England Outdoor Writer Association and the Lake Winni Retired Fishing Partners (RFPs) association where he typically hosted an annual bar-b-que.
Hal is survived by his wife of 10 years, Karin Lyon, his sons Eric & Gregg Lyon from his first marriage to Cynthia Smith, his brother Rob Lyon and a daughter Kaela Carter. His cousins Bill Hines and sister Janet, Eric’s wife Vicki and son James and Gregg’s daughters Taylor and Jordan and Kaela’s husband Pierre and daughters Lila, Gemma and son Christian. His second marriage to Edith Gosnell ended in divorce and he leaves behind her children Dan, Roy, John, Dian and Rita.
A Memorial Service will take place on Saturday, August 8, 2020, at St. Johns on the Lake Church on Bear Island.
Burial with military honors will take place at Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Hal’s name to the Bear Island Church, “St Johns on the lake” at the following URL: https://stjohnsonthelake.org/donations-and-bequests/ , or The Society for the Protection of NH Forests https://forestsociety.org/contributions.
Wilkinson-Beane-Simoneau-Paquette Funeral Home & Cremation Services, 164 Pleasant Street, Laconia, NH is assisting the family with the arrangements. For more information and to view an online memorial go to www.wilkinsonbeane.com.