April 19, 2022

Charles A. Kingsbury, Ph.D.

Charles A. Kingsbury, Ph.D., 1935-2022. Charles, usually known as Chuck or Charlie, was born in Louisville KY to Charles L and Alberta (née Kerman) Kingsbury. He graduated with honors from Iowa State in 1956 and was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He received his Ph.D. from UCLA under the direction of future Nobel laureate DJ Cram. Chuck served in the USAF on atomic detection testing projects prior to postdoctoral work at Harvard University.

He taught organic chemistry at UNL for over 43 years, touching the education of over 8000 students. Many professionals in Lincoln, Nebraska, and beyond are his former students. Chuck received awards for his teaching and outreach in science education.

Chuck was an avid gardener, and his neighbors appreciated his seasonal floral displays. Also an art fame, he filled the walls of his home with original works of art in several media.

Charles is survived by his wife of 65 years, Martha; his five sons and daughters Charles Patrick (Baldwin City KS), Ann (Omaha), Ellie (Minneapolis), Paul (Rochester MN), and Julie (Shawnee KS); his two sisters Shane and Sue in California; and six grandchildren.

Memorials to the University of Nebraska Foundation.


  1. Martha, I am so sorry to hear about Chuck. Hope you are doing well. Please let me know if I can help in anyway. Would love to see you again. I remember our days at the Barkley Center – good memories. Appreciate you so much

  2. Dear Kingsbury family,

    Please accept my sincere condolences. I am one of those countless students Chuck taught. I was a graduate student in UNL and knew him quite well. A sharp brained, witty, and thoughtful person he was. He loved chemistry and his favorite molecule was ethanol ! Every week, he poured libations to the angry rain goddess in the summer ( Every one in the department got an email from him on fridays and he bought the first round of beers). Also we all saw him as a gardener where he exchanged plants with his colleagues. He rode a bicycle every day. I took a graduate level course with him. He announced that every one will get an A grade in the course and in exchange, he wanted us to tell a dirty joke. He did not hesitate to comment the joke was ” not dirty enough” if it was a bit modest. I was also a teaching assistant for his class and at the end of the grading session, he would slip in a check for $ 20 ( Max limit UNL allowed at that time) as a token of appreciation. These are the memories that I will carry for ever. I will miss him . May his soul rest in peace.


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