Sunday service for Thomas Sege of Woodside, former CEO of Varian Associates


A memorial service for Woodside resident and technology executive Thomas D. Sege is set for 1:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 8, at Crippen & Flynn Woodside Chapel at 400 Woodside Road in Redwood City.

In the company of his family and caretaker, Mr. Sege died at home on Tuesday, March 3 due to complications from Alzheimer's disease. He was 88.

Thomas Sege was born in Novi Sad in what was then Yugoslavia, according to an account of his life from his family. At the age of 12 during World War II, Thomas and his family fled to the United States by way of Cuba and settled in New York City.

Mr. Sege graduated from Columbia University with bachelor's and master's degrees in engineering. His first job out of college was with Sperry Gyroscope on Long Island.

He and his wife Alice moved to Los Altos Hills in 1963. He was a general manager at Eitel-McCollough, a Silicon Valley pioneer in the manufacture of vacuum tubes. The company later merged with Varian Associates, which Mr. Sege led as chief executive from 1981 to 1990. He was instrumental in developing the klystron tube, used in radar and TV and radio transmission.

Mr. Sege divorced in 1976, married Dorothea in 1982 and moved to Woodside, where he lived for more than 25 years. He liked fiction and nonfiction, gardening, traveling, chess, bridge and Scrabble, the family said. He spoke Hungarian, German and French as well as English. "He was a punster, a poet, a jokester and a philosopher," his family said.

Mr. Sege is survived by his daughter, Kathleen McNamara; son Ronald Sege; and five grandchildren. Donations in his name may be made to the Alzheimer's Association.


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