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What Parents Could Forget This Event?

CINCINNATI—Thirty-five years ago, Vic Mills decided to try to find a way to avoid the mess of his granddaughter’s cloth diapers.

The chemical engineer from Procter & Gamble Co. came up with Pampers, the country’s first mass-marketed disposable diaper that helped create a multibillion-dollar industry.

P&G currently is celebrating Pampers’ 35th anniversary.

“Pampers has become a tradition in parenting,” said P&G Vice President Jeff Ansell.

Mills, now 99, long-retired and living in Tucson, Ariz., helped to develop such products as Jif peanut butter, Duncan Hines cake mixers and Pringles chips.

But none stood out as much as Pampers.

At first, disposable diapers were considered so unique they were used mainly for travel, by baby sitters and on special occasions. Today, 81 percent of the hospitals in the United States use disposable diapers, and 94 percent of all parents rely solely on disposable diapers, according to P&G’s research.

Associated Press, Corner Office, Spokesman-Review, September 1996.