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Saddest of News

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  • Robb
    This just came over the Bolger yahoo group list.........Robb In the early morning hours of Sunday May 24th 2009 Philip Cunningham Bolger of 66 Atlantic Street,
    Message 1 of 11 , May 25, 2009
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      This just came over the Bolger yahoo group list.........Robb


      In the early morning hours of Sunday May 24th 2009 Philip Cunningham Bolger of 66 Atlantic Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts took his own life, out of his own free will, shooting himself in the head with his Colt 45. I awoke later to his absence and found his body on our property out of public sight. The matter is under routine investigate by the Massachusetts State Police and Gloucester Police Department.


      He had observed the progression of declining mental faculties in earlier generations of his family. He expressed this concern as early as forty years ago while discussing science fiction with one nephew. Phil speculated about developing a machine to test for senility; the patient would be killed painlessly if the machine determined the onset of senility. The point was to relieve the individual of any terrifying concerns about a slow, pernicious, and painful demise.

      By May '09 at 81 he was in excellent physical shape for his age. What Phil and I, his wife and full business partner Susanne Altenburger had come to notice over a number years were intermittent but mounting episodes of apparent cognitive decline ranging from near funny to seriously disturbing. In business it came to express itself in a less efficient design process and diminishing productivity. On the personal level his recognition of the condition went from not noticing, over denying it, to gradually recognizing that he would not be spared either. We openly and soberly discussed the repercussions, options, and likely outcomes of this unfolding reality. And he made amply clear his insistence on controlling his final fate if at all possible.

      This reality emerged amidst an intriguing series of consultancies for US Navy, and increasing pro-bono work (1750+hrs) in an effort to prepare the Gloucester commercial fishing fleet for the age of $5.-+/gal.
      - The relationship with Navy has just recently been refreshed again in a warm and productive encounter with our client/patron, a Division Director at NAVSEA.
      - On the 'Low-Carbon' fisheries-project he recently has had opportunity to personally present the policy-proposal to Congressman John Tierney's respectful and encouraging reception, with key policy-advisors in both U.S. Senator's offices studying the proposal as well. He did take great comfort in the trust and support expressed by 40 local professional fishermen of all tribes and fisheries, a select number of shore-side stake-holders, and the continued encouragement by New England's Conservation Law Foundation. But after well over six emotionally exhausting years his efforts had yet to find constructive reflection in catalyzing jobs- and tax-base-generating marine-industrial local and state public policy for his ailing home-port, America's oldest Seaport of Gloucester.

      The mounting stress of working on these serious and pressing matters alongside the regular design-work affected Phil's and Susanne's health, nerves and outlook more and more. So much was at stake and yet options were diminishing. A broad range of attempts to modify Phil's and Susanne's work routine to accommodate his slowing productivity proved ultimately unsuccessful. In the end, as defined by Phil this Sunday morning, he came to conclude that the inevitability of progressively losing his intellectual faculties and psychological strength had been confirmed often enough. He would not wait until he could no longer clearly discern the curve of his mental decline and concurrent emotional weakening.

      Phil's personal life and body of work were an expression of firmly defined and ever broadened independence from deeply-entrenched conventions, intangible superstitions, and other known limitations on the free use of mind and thus sound judgment. He lived that way and decided to leave us that way.

      He stated repeatedly that he has had 'a good ride', he marveled at many small and larger instance of good luck, was immensely pleased to have on major occasions in his life taken the right decisions - including asking me to join him in life and work - and expressed no fear of dying, only his concern for survivors. And without you all there none of this would have been more than some obsessive compulsive need to cover paper with ink.
      We both understood, along now with a growing number in his family and friends, that there would never be a 'good time' to lose him, only that things would most likely become worse for him and us.

      Phil Bolger's body of work will remain with Phil Bolger & Friends, Inc. under my guidance. Over fifteen years of shared life and work, Phil had progressively made the explicit point for me to gradually assume the conceptual leadership of the venture with more and more of the work developed by me and vetted by Phil's deep and broad personal and historic perspective. With his death is lost his immense personal knowledge, unceasing inquisitiveness, constructive contrarianism, quick and warm humor, casual if not mischievous wit, and so often joyful outlook on to the next project.

      I have had to let go of my closest deepest friend, this most encouraging and understanding master of his craft and art. I feel amputated in ways yet to be fathomed. He counted on my and your resilience to use the spirit of his work to make the most of our time on water in work and play.

      Funeral and Memorial arrangements have not yet been made.
      His request is to be cremated.

      Mid-term it would seem an appropriate expression of love and respect for Phil Bolger to consider assembling here in Gloucester the largest fleet ever of his designs in all sizes and configurations for a memorial day on the waters that shaped, nurtured, and inspired him. Perhaps late summer/early fall would allow enough time for this project. Cape Ann has a campsite, numerous motels, lots of protected waters to overnight on. As the immediate vehemence of this loss will eventually wear off some, I would be very gratified to help structure this event. I hope that Phil Bolger's Friends will take it upon themselves to organize this salute to him.

      Susanne Altenburger, in this time of grief with ever so important assistance by Holbrook Robinson, and Tom and Ben Bolger who were here, immediately, helping me focus with sound council based on personal connections with Phil for far longer than I ever had.



      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • David Cassidy
      As posted to the Bolger group: At first shocking, then . . . . rather not. For a man who spent his life going his own way, it should not surprise us that he
      Message 2 of 11 , May 25, 2009
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        As posted to the Bolger group:

        At first shocking, then . . . . rather not. For a man who spent his
        life going his own way, it should not surprise us that he would also
        choose his own passing.

        My thoughts to you, Susanne, and to all of Phil's family and friends.

        The world is a lesser place, every time it loses the likes of a Phil
        Bolger.

        He will live on for many generations, in the genius of his work and
        the uniqueness of his spirit.

        DavidC


        On May 25, 2009, at 8:56 PM, Robb wrote:

        > This just came over the Bolger yahoo group list.........Robb
        >
        >
        > In the early morning hours of Sunday May 24th 2009 Philip Cunningham
        > Bolger of 66 Atlantic Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts took his own
        > life, out of his own free will, shooting himself in the head with
        > his Colt 45. I awoke later to his absence and found his body on our
        > property out of public sight. The matter is under routine
        > investigate by the Massachusetts State Police and Gloucester Police
        > Department.
        >
        >
        >
      • Don Swearingen
        Stillness. To: Michalak@yahoogroups.com From: robb@microcruiser.com Date: Mon, 25 May 2009 20:56:22 -0400 Subject: [Michalak] Saddest of News This just came
        Message 3 of 11 , May 25, 2009
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          Stillness.







          To: Michalak@yahoogroups.com
          From: robb@...
          Date: Mon, 25 May 2009 20:56:22 -0400
          Subject: [Michalak] Saddest of News







          This just came over the Bolger yahoo group list.........Robb

          In the early morning hours of Sunday May 24th 2009 Philip Cunningham Bolger of 66 Atlantic Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts took his own life, out of his own free will, shooting himself in the head with his Colt 45. I awoke later to his absence and found his body on our property out of public sight. The matter is under routine investigate by the Massachusetts State Police and Gloucester Police Department.

          He had observed the progression of declining mental faculties in earlier generations of his family. He expressed this concern as early as forty years ago while discussing science fiction with one nephew. Phil speculated about developing a machine to test for senility; the patient would be killed painlessly if the machine determined the onset of senility. The point was to relieve the individual of any terrifying concerns about a slow, pernicious, and painful demise.

          By May '09 at 81 he was in excellent physical shape for his age. What Phil and I, his wife and full business partner Susanne Altenburger had come to notice over a number years were intermittent but mounting episodes of apparent cognitive decline ranging from near funny to seriously disturbing. In business it came to express itself in a less efficient design process and diminishing productivity. On the personal level his recognition of the condition went from not noticing, over denying it, to gradually recognizing that he would not be spared either. We openly and soberly discussed the repercussions, options, and likely outcomes of this unfolding reality. And he made amply clear his insistence on controlling his final fate if at all possible.

          This reality emerged amidst an intriguing series of consultancies for US Navy, and increasing pro-bono work (1750+hrs) in an effort to prepare the Gloucester commercial fishing fleet for the age of $5.-+/gal.
          - The relationship with Navy has just recently been refreshed again in a warm and productive encounter with our client/patron, a Division Director at NAVSEA.
          - On the 'Low-Carbon' fisheries-project he recently has had opportunity to personally present the policy-proposal to Congressman John Tierney's respectful and encouraging reception, with key policy-advisors in both U.S. Senator's offices studying the proposal as well. He did take great comfort in the trust and support expressed by 40 local professional fishermen of all tribes and fisheries, a select number of shore-side stake-holders, and the continued encouragement by New England's Conservation Law Foundation. But after well over six emotionally exhausting years his efforts had yet to find constructive reflection in catalyzing jobs- and tax-base-generating marine-industrial local and state public policy for his ailing home-port, America's oldest Seaport of Gloucester.

          The mounting stress of working on these serious and pressing matters alongside the regular design-work affected Phil's and Susanne's health, nerves and outlook more and more. So much was at stake and yet options were diminishing. A broad range of attempts to modify Phil's and Susanne's work routine to accommodate his slowing productivity proved ultimately unsuccessful. In the end, as defined by Phil this Sunday morning, he came to conclude that the inevitability of progressively losing his intellectual faculties and psychological strength had been confirmed often enough. He would not wait until he could no longer clearly discern the curve of his mental decline and concurrent emotional weakening.

          Phil's personal life and body of work were an expression of firmly defined and ever broadened independence from deeply-entrenched conventions, intangible superstitions, and other known limitations on the free use of mind and thus sound judgment. He lived that way and decided to leave us that way.

          He stated repeatedly that he has had 'a good ride', he marveled at many small and larger instance of good luck, was immensely pleased to have on major occasions in his life taken the right decisions - including asking me to join him in life and work - and expressed no fear of dying, only his concern for survivors. And without you all there none of this would have been more than some obsessive compulsive need to cover paper with ink.
          We both understood, along now with a growing number in his family and friends, that there would never be a 'good time' to lose him, only that things would most likely become worse for him and us.

          Phil Bolger's body of work will remain with Phil Bolger & Friends, Inc. under my guidance. Over fifteen years of shared life and work, Phil had progressively made the explicit point for me to gradually assume the conceptual leadership of the venture with more and more of the work developed by me and vetted by Phil's deep and broad personal and historic perspective. With his death is lost his immense personal knowledge, unceasing inquisitiveness, constructive contrarianism, quick and warm humor, casual if not mischievous wit, and so often joyful outlook on to the next project.

          I have had to let go of my closest deepest friend, this most encouraging and understanding master of his craft and art. I feel amputated in ways yet to be fathomed. He counted on my and your resilience to use the spirit of his work to make the most of our time on water in work and play.

          Funeral and Memorial arrangements have not yet been made.
          His request is to be cremated.

          Mid-term it would seem an appropriate expression of love and respect for Phil Bolger to consider assembling here in Gloucester the largest fleet ever of his designs in all sizes and configurations for a memorial day on the waters that shaped, nurtured, and inspired him. Perhaps late summer/early fall would allow enough time for this project. Cape Ann has a campsite, numerous motels, lots of protected waters to overnight on. As the immediate vehemence of this loss will eventually wear off some, I would be very gratified to help structure this event. I hope that Phil Bolger's Friends will take it upon themselves to organize this salute to him.

          Susanne Altenburger, in this time of grief with ever so important assistance by Holbrook Robinson, and Tom and Ben Bolger who were here, immediately, helping me focus with sound council based on personal connections with Phil for far longer than I ever had.

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]










          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Rob Rohde-Szudy
          Couldn t have said it better, so I ll sign on with what Dave said. --Rob   Re: Saddest of News     Posted by: David Cassidy d.cassidy@charter.net
          Message 4 of 11 , May 26, 2009
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            Couldn't have said it better, so I'll sign on with what Dave said.
            --Rob
             
            Re: Saddest of News
                Posted by: "David Cassidy" d.cassidy@... dcassidyus
                Date: Mon May 25, 2009 6:04 pm ((PDT))

            As posted to the Bolger group:

            At first shocking, then . . . . rather not. For a man who spent his 
            life going his own way, it should not surprise us that he would also 
            choose his own passing.

            My thoughts to you, Susanne, and to all of Phil's family and friends.

            The world is a lesser place, every time it loses the likes of a Phil 
            Bolger.

            He will live on for many generations, in the genius of his work and 
            the uniqueness of his spirit.

            DavidC





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • c o'donnell
            Look how much he s inspired everyone. Good for him for doing what he did over so many years, and making sure that people who read his stuff knew that he
            Message 5 of 11 , May 26, 2009
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              Look how much he's inspired everyone. Good for him for doing what he
              did over so many years, and making sure that people who read his
              stuff knew that he learned from others before him.


              === craig o'donnell
              dadadata@...
              Box 232 Betterton Md 21610





              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • Bill Howard
              Just this weekend I sailed my June Bug out the Little Wicomico River into the Chesapeake Bay. A great boat, designed by a great man. ... [Non-text portions of
              Message 6 of 11 , May 26, 2009
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                Just this weekend I sailed my June Bug out the Little Wicomico River into
                the Chesapeake Bay.
                A great boat, designed by a great man.

                On Mon, May 25, 2009 at 8:56 PM, Robb <robb@...> wrote:

                >
                >
                > This just came over the Bolger yahoo group list.........Robb
                >
                > In the early morning hours of Sunday May 24th 2009 Philip Cunningham Bolger
                > of 66 Atlantic Street, Gloucester, Massachusetts took his own life, out of
                > his own free will, shooting himself in the head with his Colt 45. I awoke
                > later to his absence and found his body on our property out of public sight.
                > The matter is under routine investigate by the Massachusetts State Police
                > and Gloucester Police Department.
                >
                > He had observed the progression of declining mental faculties in earlier
                > generations of his family. He expressed this concern as early as forty years
                > ago while discussing science fiction with one nephew. Phil speculated about
                > developing a machine to test for senility; the patient would be killed
                > painlessly if the machine determined the onset of senility. The point was to
                > relieve the individual of any terrifying concerns about a slow, pernicious,
                > and painful demise.
                >
                > By May '09 at 81 he was in excellent physical shape for his age. What Phil
                > and I, his wife and full business partner Susanne Altenburger had come to
                > notice over a number years were intermittent but mounting episodes of
                > apparent cognitive decline ranging from near funny to seriously disturbing.
                > In business it came to express itself in a less efficient design process and
                > diminishing productivity. On the personal level his recognition of the
                > condition went from not noticing, over denying it, to gradually recognizing
                > that he would not be spared either. We openly and soberly discussed the
                > repercussions, options, and likely outcomes of this unfolding reality. And
                > he made amply clear his insistence on controlling his final fate if at all
                > possible.
                >
                > This reality emerged amidst an intriguing series of consultancies for US
                > Navy, and increasing pro-bono work (1750+hrs) in an effort to prepare the
                > Gloucester commercial fishing fleet for the age of $5.-+/gal.
                > - The relationship with Navy has just recently been refreshed again in a
                > warm and productive encounter with our client/patron, a Division Director at
                > NAVSEA.
                > - On the 'Low-Carbon' fisheries-project he recently has had opportunity to
                > personally present the policy-proposal to Congressman John Tierney's
                > respectful and encouraging reception, with key policy-advisors in both U.S.
                > Senator's offices studying the proposal as well. He did take great comfort
                > in the trust and support expressed by 40 local professional fishermen of all
                > tribes and fisheries, a select number of shore-side stake-holders, and the
                > continued encouragement by New England's Conservation Law Foundation. But
                > after well over six emotionally exhausting years his efforts had yet to find
                > constructive reflection in catalyzing jobs- and tax-base-generating
                > marine-industrial local and state public policy for his ailing home-port,
                > America's oldest Seaport of Gloucester.
                >
                > The mounting stress of working on these serious and pressing matters
                > alongside the regular design-work affected Phil's and Susanne's health,
                > nerves and outlook more and more. So much was at stake and yet options were
                > diminishing. A broad range of attempts to modify Phil's and Susanne's work
                > routine to accommodate his slowing productivity proved ultimately
                > unsuccessful. In the end, as defined by Phil this Sunday morning, he came to
                > conclude that the inevitability of progressively losing his intellectual
                > faculties and psychological strength had been confirmed often enough. He
                > would not wait until he could no longer clearly discern the curve of his
                > mental decline and concurrent emotional weakening.
                >
                > Phil's personal life and body of work were an expression of firmly defined
                > and ever broadened independence from deeply-entrenched conventions,
                > intangible superstitions, and other known limitations on the free use of
                > mind and thus sound judgment. He lived that way and decided to leave us that
                > way.
                >
                > He stated repeatedly that he has had 'a good ride', he marveled at many
                > small and larger instance of good luck, was immensely pleased to have on
                > major occasions in his life taken the right decisions - including asking me
                > to join him in life and work - and expressed no fear of dying, only his
                > concern for survivors. And without you all there none of this would have
                > been more than some obsessive compulsive need to cover paper with ink.
                > We both understood, along now with a growing number in his family and
                > friends, that there would never be a 'good time' to lose him, only that
                > things would most likely become worse for him and us.
                >
                > Phil Bolger's body of work will remain with Phil Bolger & Friends, Inc.
                > under my guidance. Over fifteen years of shared life and work, Phil had
                > progressively made the explicit point for me to gradually assume the
                > conceptual leadership of the venture with more and more of the work
                > developed by me and vetted by Phil's deep and broad personal and historic
                > perspective. With his death is lost his immense personal knowledge,
                > unceasing inquisitiveness, constructive contrarianism, quick and warm humor,
                > casual if not mischievous wit, and so often joyful outlook on to the next
                > project.
                >
                > I have had to let go of my closest deepest friend, this most encouraging
                > and understanding master of his craft and art. I feel amputated in ways yet
                > to be fathomed. He counted on my and your resilience to use the spirit of
                > his work to make the most of our time on water in work and play.
                >
                > Funeral and Memorial arrangements have not yet been made.
                > His request is to be cremated.
                >
                > Mid-term it would seem an appropriate expression of love and respect for
                > Phil Bolger to consider assembling here in Gloucester the largest fleet ever
                > of his designs in all sizes and configurations for a memorial day on the
                > waters that shaped, nurtured, and inspired him. Perhaps late summer/early
                > fall would allow enough time for this project. Cape Ann has a campsite,
                > numerous motels, lots of protected waters to overnight on. As the immediate
                > vehemence of this loss will eventually wear off some, I would be very
                > gratified to help structure this event. I hope that Phil Bolger's Friends
                > will take it upon themselves to organize this salute to him.
                >
                > Susanne Altenburger, in this time of grief with ever so important
                > assistance by Holbrook Robinson, and Tom and Ben Bolger who were here,
                > immediately, helping me focus with sound council based on personal
                > connections with Phil for far longer than I ever had.
                >
                > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                >
                >
                >


                [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              • miles_bore
                What a wonderful legacy Phil Bolger has left for current and future generations. Sympathies from Australia. Miles.
                Message 7 of 11 , May 27, 2009
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                  What a wonderful legacy Phil Bolger has left for current and future generations.
                  Sympathies from Australia.
                  Miles.



                  --- In Michalak@yahoogroups.com, c o'donnell <dadadata@...> wrote:
                  >
                  >
                  > Look how much he's inspired everyone. Good for him for doing what he
                  > did over so many years, and making sure that people who read his
                  > stuff knew that he learned from others before him.
                  >
                  >
                  > === craig o'donnell
                  > dadadata@...
                  > Box 232 Betterton Md 21610
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  >
                • Stephen & Judith Martin
                  more condolences from australia. and so say all of us [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  Message 8 of 11 , May 28, 2009
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                    more condolences from australia.

                    and so say all of us

                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • graeme19121984
                    ...I just read, and am moved by: On Final Tides Tides come and go, winds rise up and blow, dusk to dawn oft no time to warn, impossible to guess let alone to
                    Message 9 of 11 , Jun 8, 2009
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                      ...I just read, and am moved by:

                      On Final Tides

                      Tides come and go, winds rise up and blow,
                      dusk to dawn oft no time to warn,
                      impossible to guess let alone to know
                      when each of us upon our final tide will go.

                      Which friends could well without delay,
                      slip anchor, sail away, within the minute
                      or the hour, on the morrow, tonight, today…
                      up and leave loved ones in sorrow,
                      which ones among us, who for sure can say?
                      (Mark Steele (NZ)- as seen in April 24 Duckworks article)

                      yet, as

                      "Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
                      Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
                      Rage, rage against the dying of the light. " (T S Elliot)

                      so Phil always sought to mitigate a sorrowful wake.

                      Graeme
                      toasting tides, tears, friends, Phil




                      --- In Michalak@yahoogroups.com, "Stephen & Judith Martin" <stephenmartin5@...> wrote:
                      >
                      > more condolences from australia.
                      >
                      > and so say all of us
                    • David Calloway
                      From too much love of living, From hope and fear set free, We thank with brief thanksgiving Whatever gods may be That no man lives forever, That dead men rise
                      Message 10 of 11 , Jun 8, 2009
                      • 0 Attachment
                        From too much love of living,
                        From hope and fear set free,
                        We thank with brief thanksgiving
                        Whatever gods may be
                        That no man lives forever,
                        That dead men rise up never;
                        That even the weariest river
                        Winds somewhere safe to sea.



                        The Garden of Proserpine.



                        Algernon Charles Swinburne. (1837-1909)



                        Goodbye, Phil.



                        David





                        From: Michalak@yahoogroups.com [mailto:Michalak@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
                        Of graeme19121984
                        Sent: Monday, June 08, 2009 2:06 AM
                        To: Michalak@yahoogroups.com
                        Subject: [Michalak] Re: Saddest of News








                        ...I just read, and am moved by:

                        On Final Tides

                        Tides come and go, winds rise up and blow,
                        dusk to dawn oft no time to warn,
                        impossible to guess let alone to know
                        when each of us upon our final tide will go.

                        Which friends could well without delay,
                        slip anchor, sail away, within the minute
                        or the hour, on the morrow, tonight, today.
                        up and leave loved ones in sorrow,
                        which ones among us, who for sure can say?
                        (Mark Steele (NZ)- as seen in April 24 Duckworks article)

                        yet, as

                        "Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
                        Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
                        Rage, rage against the dying of the light. " (T S Elliot)

                        so Phil always sought to mitigate a sorrowful wake.

                        Graeme
                        toasting tides, tears, friends, Phil

                        --- In Michalak@yahoogroups.com <mailto:Michalak%40yahoogroups.com> ,
                        "Stephen & Judith Martin" <stephenmartin5@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > more condolences from australia.
                        >
                        > and so say all of us





                        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                      • graeme19121984
                        ... Should be attributed to Dylan Thomas of course. I get these mixed up a bit lately upon discovering some possible Elliot-PCB-literature links. Sorry.
                        Message 11 of 11 , Jun 8, 2009
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                          > Rage, rage against the dying of the light. " (T S Elliot)

                          Should be attributed to Dylan Thomas of course. I get these mixed up a bit lately upon discovering some possible Elliot-PCB-literature links. Sorry.
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