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Three Generations of Family History at DOE’s Hanford Site

Hanford N Reactor adjusted

Hanford N Reactor adjustedThe Hanford Site, located along the Columbia River in the southeastern part of Washington State, was part of the Manhattan Project, producing plutonium for nuclear weapons during World War II and the Cold War. Many of its employees have a multi-generation family legacy on the Hanford Site—one is the Markillie family.

The Markillie’s history at the Hanford site began with their late grandfather, Henry Bellarts. Henry worked in the chemical separation plants among other assignments across Hanford for more than 30 years.

Henry’s son-in-law, the late Bill Markillie, worked in many areas across the Hanford Site

Henry and Bel
Henry and Vel Bellarts

including the reactors, design-build team for the Fast Flux Test Facility, the 300 Area Hanford Engineering Development Laboratory, and the chemical separation plants. He devoted more than 30 years at Hanford.

Now in the family’s third generation of work at Hanford, Jeffery Markillie is a business director and planning manager with Amentum at the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant (WTP). WTP’s mission is the processing and stabilization of the 56 million gallons of radioactive and chemical waste currently stored at the Hanford Site.

Jeffrey has worked in several departments at WTP including plant

Bill and PEggy
Bill and Peggy Markillie and grandson

management, plant engineering, and research and technology. Prior to working at WTP, Jeffrey served as a naval officer and worked in consulting.

“Interestingly, grandpa and dad got into this industry. It wasn’t my goal, but it has become my life’s work. I am proud to contribute to the WTP team,” Markillie said. Jeffrey works to remediate the radioactive waste that his grandfather and father created during the Cold War.

Jeffrey and Meng
Jeffrey and Meng Markillie

Though his family has contributed years of work at Hanford, Jeffrey doesn’t want to steal the spotlight. He said, “It is important to note that there are other people with similar stories of multiple generations working in the nuclear industry. We all value our work and families’ histories.”

The Markillie’s family work has become full circle at Hanford from producing nuclear material for national security purposes to remediating radioactive waste resulting from decades of nuclear material production. Amentum is proud to highlight our employees’ long lineage of work and commitment to the DOE mission at the Hanford site.



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