Volume 49, Issue 2 (March 2004)
Dr. Walter C. McCrone—His Contributions to Environmental Microscopy
This paper briefly highlights Dr.McCrone's contributions to the recently emerging field of forensic environmental microscopy. Few, if any, criminalists are not familiar with Dr. Walter C. McCrone's voluminous contributions to the field of forensic microscopy and the analyses of micro and ultra micro transfer (trace) evidence. Dr. McCrone was renowned for his life long efforts in promoting the application of the Polarized Light Microscope (PLM) to problem solving.
It is therefore not surprising that Dr.McCronewould also apply his analytical and deductive skills employing thePLMto problems in environmental analysis. He is well known for his many publications dealing with the analysis of asbestos and asbestos like materials by PLM. His philosophy of presenting intense professional training courses stressing the practical applications of the PLM carried over to a series of courses offered to students requiring education in other areas of microscopical analysis. Through McCrone Research Institute, Dr.McCrone can be said to have been responsible for the training of a large majority of microscopists who literally analyzed tens of millions of samples. These analyses were performed utilizing methodologies developed predominately by him and adopted by regulatory agencies in the United States and abroad. The methods he fostered are a major part of the arsenal of microscopical techniques employed by forensic environmental microscopists in their efforts to identify a manufacturer of an insulation product for the purpose of litigation.