Chandler Funeral Homes & Crematory Logo

302-478-7100 Wilmington & Hockessin, DE

Parry M. Norling

Parry McWhinnie Norling, 85, passed away peacefully in his sleep on May 17, 2024, at Cokesbury Village in Hockessin, DE. He was the loving father of Christine (Andrew) Jones and Jonathan Norling (Colleen Quinn). He was predeceased by his parents, Oscar Norling and Katherine McWhinnie Norling, and his loving wife, Nancy McDiarmid Norling, who passed away on April 26, 2023.

Parry was born in 1939 in Des Moines, Iowa, and soon moved to St. Louis, Missouri.  He graduated from the John Burroughs School in 1957, and attended Harvard College in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Princeton University, where he earned a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry. In 1965, he met and married Nan.  The young couple moved to Chadds Ford, PA where Parry had taken a position at the at the E.I du Pont de Nemours and Company.

Parry spent most of his career as a chemist at DuPont, where he held several roles ranging from plant manager, Laboratory Director, Corporate Health & Safety Director, to Planning Director during his thirty-five years with the company.  In these positions, he developed an interest in developing business processes for managing the transition of technological innovations from research and development projects to commercially successful products.

After retiring from DuPont in 1999, he continued pursuing his interest in technology management as a Science and Technology Fellow at the RAND Corporation and as an adjunct professor at Georgetown.  This led to a passion for teaching, and in 2005, he became an Instructor at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in Wilmington, where he taught courses in innovation and creativity.  He also served on numerous boards and was an active member of the First Unitarian Church.

In addition to his intellectual pursuits, Parry was a racquet sports fanatic, playing tennis, paddle tennis and squash (and a bit of pickleball) multiple times a week. He was also an active parent to his children and grandparent to his six grandchildren.

Parry was known for his keen intellect, quick sense of humor, compassion for others, and relentless optimism.   He loved to engage in meaningful conversations, often with a glass of wine or beer in hand. He also enjoyed gardening, canoeing, sailing, hiking, reading, music, and traveling with his lovely wife.

In addition to his children, Parry is survived by six grandchildren and many cousins and nephews.

A service to celebrate Parry’s life will be held on Monday, June 10, 2024, at 2:30pm in the Atrium Meeting Room in the main building of Cokesbury Village, 726 Loveville Rd, Hockessin, DE 19707.

Memorial Contributions can be made to the Delaware Nature Society ( or the First Unitarian Church of Wilmington (

Funeral Services

A service to celebrate Parry’s life will be held on Monday, June 10, 2024, at 2:30pm in the Atrium Meeting Room in the main building of Cokesbury Village, 726 Loveville Rd, Hockessin, DE 19707.


    Donna Dross writes,
    You will be missed my friend. It was a pleasure taking care of you and the laughs we had were priceless. Sleep well with Nan and the family. You have my condolences and we thank you for sharing your parents with us. God bless
    06/04/2024 03:51 pm
    Jane Norling writes,
    Sending much love to Parry’s family. I havent seen Parry in many years and am part of his extended family. His brillant smile and diverse intrests ate a joy to remember. Love to all, Jane Lawrence Norling, Chicago
    06/07/2024 12:55 pm
    Edris Harrell writes,
    I was so sorry to learn of Parry's death. He was one of the first friendly faces we got to know at First U, and he visited our home to welcome us. (That was almost 20 years ago.) Parry and Nan were always lovely to chat with, and I was glad to see them at church on Sundays. They are missed.
    06/08/2024 10:12 am

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

When you "Light a Candle" the candle image is posted with your condolence.

Thank You

Your online condolence will appear once approved by our site administrator.