Pavel Cotofana

Pavel Cotofana passed away on July 9th, at his home in Hayward, CA, just before his 74th birthday. He was a loving husband, father, and grandfather, who will be missed by his wife, Cornelia, sons, Paul and Corneliu, their wives, Allison and Sophie, and their children, Ethan and Kai. Pavel was also a friend, colleague, mentor, leader, and source of humor, warmth, and comfort to many through life’s storms and stresses.

Pavel was born in Romania, to parents, Nicolae and Constanta, in a rural village near the Black Sea. The only one of seven children to receive a college education, he got his M.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University POLITEHNICA of Bucharest in 1971, and completed PhD studies in 1980. He met his wife of 51 years, Cornelia, in church, when he came to Bucharest for university. Pavel and Cornelia sacrificed much to bring their two young children to the United States in 1985, for a chance at a better life. They made their home in California, and moved to Hayward in 1993. Their journey was aided by the kindness of family, friends, and strangers, and, in turn, they helped and cared for many others.

Pavel worked as a chemist and program manager for life science companies including Pharm-Eco Labs, Applied Biosystems, Life Technologies, and Thermo Fisher Scientific. He never stopped learning and loved to read. Pavel was a storyteller, technical thinker, handyman, lover of nature and history. Above all, he was kind, even in the most difficult of circumstances. He is loved and will be missed.

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