Dr. Hans Heinrich Kuhn

January 12, 1924 ~ May 11, 2021 (age 97)


Dr. Hans Heinrich Kuhn

Dr. Hans Heinrich Kuhn, 97, died on May 11, 2021 at his home in Summit Hills Spartanburg. Born in 1924 in Niederuzwil Switzerland he was the son of the late Werner and Gretel Kuhn and husband of Edith Kuhn Peyer from Zurich Switzerland. Dr. Kuhn was educated in Switzerland and received his master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich Switzerland. He received his PhD degree in organic chemistry from the ETH in 1953. After four years of postdoctoral research, he immigrated to the United States in 1957 and was employed by W.R. Grace and Co. in Boston MA. In 1960 Dr. Kuhn joined the Milliken Research Corporation and worked in various positions. He was named a Milliken Research Fellow in 1995 and retired after 40 years of service. After his retirement, the Milliken Research Corporation created the Kuhn Award, given yearly for exceptional achievements in research.  In 1997 he received the Olney medal from the American Association of Textile Chemist and Colorists for outstanding achievement in textile or polymer chemistry of major importance to textile science. In the same year he also received the SEAM award from the Polymer Research Institute of the Polytechnic Institute of New York University (formerly Brooklyn Poly) for leadership in the development of technological applications of conducting polymers.

From 1970-1995 Dr. Kuhn served as Honorary Consul of Switzerland for the cities of Spartanburg, Greenville, Columbia in SC, as well as Charlotte and Asheville in NC. He has been honored as Palmetto Gentleman by Governor John C. West in 1973 and Knight of the Queen City of Charlotte by Mayor John Belk in 1977. He received the International Human Relations Award from the city of Spartanburg in 1986. He is also past president of the Swiss American Society of the Piedmont, and past treasurer of the Arts Partnership of Greater Spartanburg (formerly Arts Counsel).

He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church, North Spartanburg Rotary Club and Swiss American Society of the Piedmont. In his youth he served as district scout leader in Zurich. 

Surviving are his son John Kuhn and wife Karin of Princeton, N.J.,their children Stephanie Harding and husband Robert and son Anthony, Sabrina Maloney and husband Sean and their son Logan. His daughter Barbara Mueller and husband Willi with their children Annelies Mueller-Neuhaus and husband Matthias and their daughter Kaia Christine Mueller, and Mathias Mueller, all of Switzerland.

Funeral services will be held on Thursday, May 20, 2021 at 11:00 AM in the main sanctuary of the First Presbyterian Church. We invite you to join us in the celebration of a life lived to the fullest. To us he is best remembered as a devoted family man, a brilliant chemist, a generous person, who recounted wonderful stories of his long life, with humor and wit.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Mobile Meals, 419 East Main Street, Spartanburg SC 29302.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Dr. Hans Heinrich Kuhn, please visit our floral store.


Funeral Service
May 20, 2021

11:00 AM
First Presbyterian Church Spartanburg
393 East Main Street
Spartanburg, SC 29302

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