Over the past few years, many hundreds of the future students and their families who arrived on campus for the first time were greeted in the Alumni Memorial Building by a warm and welcoming man who possessed a particularly uncommon knowledge of the university.
Little did these visitors know the extent of the man's knowledge, the depth of his commitment, or the significance of his impact on Lehigh.
William C. Hittinger '44, '73H, died March 17 at the age of 90. His life was full of the joy of friends and family and of loyal service to his alma mater.
A Bethlehem native, Hittinger graduated from Lehigh with a B.S. in metallurgical engineering. He led an accomplished career in engineering electronics that spanned over six decades. As Executive Vice President of Research and Engineering of RCA, he oversaw the company's ambitious VideoDisc project during the 1970s and 1980s.
Hittinger was an active member of Lehigh's Board of Trustees for over 22 years, including six years as Chairman, culminated by his role as interim President for the 1997-98 school year.
A multi-sport athlete on campus, Hittinger played football for two seasons and also was a member of Lehigh's varsity baseball team. He was inducted into the Lehigh Sports Hall of Fame in 1999 and played a major role in raising money for the school's first fully-endowed wrestling and Dean's scholarships.
Hittinger is survived by his wife of 68 years, Elizabeth, his four children -- three of whom attended Lehigh -- William '71, David '75, Nancy '78 and daughter Patricia, his sisters Ruth Motz and Barbara Waskowitz, as well as 11 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.