Dr. Lilli Hornig, who rejected a male chauvinistic job offer to type other scientists’ top secret reports during World War II and instead found her way to produce research that helped trigger the first atomic bomb, died on Friday in Providence, R.I. She was 96.
The cause was heart and lung failure, her daughter Joanna Hornig Fox said.
Dr. Hornig was in her early 20s in 1944 when, armed with a graduate degree in chemistry, she was offered the secretarial position at a secret atomic laboratory in Los Alamos, N.M., part of the government’s Manhattan Project. Her husband had been hired as an explosives expert there.
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