Cover photo for Neal J. Rothman PhD's Obituary
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1928 Neal 2022

Neal J. Rothman PhD

November 20, 1928 — December 21, 2022

Monroe Township, NJ

Neal J. Rothman PhD, formerly of Indianapolis, passed away on December 21, 2022, in Monroe Township New Jersey at the age of 94 and 3 weeks.

Dr. Rothman was born in Philadelphia on Nov. 20, 1928, to Louis and Sarah Rachel (Lieberman) Rothman.  Neal’s family moved frequently between Philadelphia and Atlantic City and he graduated from Central High in Philadelphia June class of 1944.

He served as a member of the Army Medical Corps during the Occupation of Japan. Neal benefited from the GI bill and attended the University of Delaware; he often credited a former teacher for sparking his interest in mathematics. He then attended Tulane for his master’s degree, meeting his future wife, the late Rozann Cole, whom he married in 1955. Neal received his PhD from Louisiana State University. After graduating he worked at the Aberdeen proving grounds on the ENIAC with Von Neumann. He went on to teach at University of Rochester, the University Of Illinois at Urbana, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Technion, and was head of the Department Of Mathematics at Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis (IUPUI). With a stint at the National Science Foundation in Washington DC.

Throughout his academic career he took great pride in teaching and furthered the field of semi-group theory. After retirement he volunteered to help people with their taxes, working in a number of local library branches, as well as taking on the role of treasurer in the Indianapolis Early Music society.

He was most proud of his family: wife, Rozann (deceased 2010); son, Hal (Lauralee) who predeceased him in 2007 of ALS; and daughters Elaine and Anne (Dov); and his six grandchildren, Talia, Joshua, Brent, Quentin, Yehuda and Zissie.

The last years of his life were complicated by Parkinson’s, he had a wonderful aide named Michael Asiamah who made his final days comfortable.

Neal will always be remembered for his joy of mathematics, music and his love for a good mystery or science fiction story.

Graveside services will be today, December 27, 2022 at 1pm in Washington Park North Cemetery.

May his memory be an eternal blessing.

Arrangements entrusted to Aaron-Ruben-Nelson Funeral Home, 11411 N. Michigan Road, Zionsville, Indiana 46077

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Graveside Service

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

Starts at 1:00 pm (Eastern time)

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