Gerard de Vaucouleurs was born on 25 April 1918 in Paris. He became interested in astronomy in 1932 when his mother bought him a small telescope, and, after reading books by Th. Moreux, he decided he wanted to be a professional astronomer. He received his BSc in 1936 from the Lycee Charlemagne in Paris, and went to the University of Paris (the Sorbonne) from 1937-1939 for training in physics, astronomy, and mathematics.
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Ganesar Chanmugam, an internationally respected astrophysicist and professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Louisiana State University, died on 25 March 1996 of complications following a bone marrow transplant in his long battle with Multiple Myeloma.
On 21 August 1995, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar died of heart failure at age 84. Obituary notices were carried by newspapers, journals of general science and by most specialist journals in astronomy and astrophysics. Representative examples include: "1983 Physics Nobelist S. Chandrasekhar Is Dead At Age 84," by Neeraja Sankaran, The Scientist 9:17 (18 September 1995); "Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar (1910-1995)," by R. Nityananda, Current Science 69: 554-556 (1995); and "Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar (1910-1995)," by D.
Robert Chambers, Director of Brackett Observatory and professor of astronomy at Pomona College, was born on 23 September 1930. After graduating from the University of Washington in mechanical engineering, he served in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War before entering graduate work in astronomy at Berkeley, where he received his PhD in 1964.
Jason Cardelli died suddenly of a heart attack on May 14 at age 40 at the peak of his scientific career, a tragedy for family, friends and for our field. He is survived by his wife, Julia Mantle, brothers, James and John, sister, Laura, and his parents Aldo and Marilyn.
Jason was born on 1 December 1955 in Berwyn, lliinois and knew that he wanted to become an astronomer from the time he was in elementary school. He received his BS in astronomy from the University of Illinois in 1978 and his PhD in astronomy from the University of Washington in 1985.
Charles Worley, Astronomer at the US Naval Observatory, died unexpectedly on December 31, 1997, after a short illness. He was born on May 22, 1935 in Iowa City, Iowa, and grew up in Des Moines, where his father was a doctor. He became interested in astronomy at age nine. His first observational work as an amateur astronomer was the plotting and recording of more than 10,000 meteors for the American Meteor Society. Continuing his love for astronomy, Worley attended Swarthmore College, where he took part in the parallax program and met the other love of his life, his wife Jane.
On December 10, 1997, the day before he was going to be 82, Frank Bradshaw (Brad) Wood passed away in Gainesville, Florida. With Brad, the world has lost one of the most outstanding astronomers of the present century in the field of close binaries.
On January 4, 1998, Dr. Robert L. Wildey, Professor of Mathematical Physics at Northern Arizona University (NAU) passed away unexpectedly in Flagstaff, Arizona. He had been a member of the Physics and Astronomy faculty since 1981.
John Wang, Assistant Professor of Astronomy at the University of Maryland, died in August 1998 in a hiking accident in Colorado. He was 38 years old.
Victor G. Szebehely, who held the Richard B. Curran Centennial Chair in Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, died at his home on September 13, 1997, from cancer.
David N. Schramm was born on October 25, 1945, in St. Louis, Missouri and died December 19, 1997, when the plane he was piloting crashed near Byers, Colorado. He was en route to a family gathering in Aspen for the holidays. He was one of the most influential astrophysicists of his generation, and we will miss him.
Alexander W. (Alex) Rodgers, internationally known astrophysicist and professor of astronomy at the Australian National University (ANU) died on October 10, 1997, just weeks short of his scheduled retirement. He is survived by his wife, Ruth, and three children.
Barry Rappaport undertook an amazingly diverse range of endeavors during his all-too-brief professional career. Yet from each could be traced his passion for astronomy and for helping others.
The son of Jean and Walter Rappaport, Barry was born in Brooklyn, New York and attended Solomon Schechter Day School in West Orange, New Jersey. In 1982, he was the only student at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) to graduate with an undergraduate major in astronomy.
Charles Franklin Prosser, Jr. was born in San Diego on August 26, 1963. He graduated from Lincoln High School in Gahanna, Ohio in 1981 and received a BS in physics and astronomy (cum laude, and with election to Phi Beta Kappa) from Ohio State University. While at OSU, he worked with Arne Slettebak and attended summer programs at NRAO and NCAR, working respectively with C. P. O'Dea and D. Mihalas. He subsequently attended the University of California, Santa Cruz (joining AAS in 1989) and earned a PhD in astronomy in 1991.
Andrew Michalitsianos, Chief of the Laboratory for Astronomy and Solar Physics (LASP) at Goddard Space Flight Center, died of brain cancer on October 19, 1997. He was 50 years old. Until his last days, he was hard at work on reorganizing and rejuvenating the Laboratory of which he had recently taken command, and on a proposal for a spacecraft to monitor temporal changes in the ultraviolet and X-ray spectra of stars and active galaxies. Because he changed his legal name in the early 1970's, his more than 100 publications are variously published under A.G. Michalitsanos (early) and A.G.
Walter S. McAfee, whose scientific career was spent at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey, died in Belmar, NJ on February 18, 1995. The structure housing the Information and Intelligence Electronic Warfare Directorate at Ft. Monmouth was dedicated as the McAfee Center in 1997, the first time a civilian has been so honored there.
Dr. Gabriel Kojoian passed away on May 17, 1998, victim of a fatal heart attack. He was 70. For the past two decades, Kojoian was professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire, where he was a popular teacher, noted for his enthusiasm and often unconventional approach to his subject matter.
Karl Kamper, astrometrist, spectroscopist, and instrumentation scientist was born on 1941 April 20 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He earned a BSc with honors in astronomy from Georgetown University in 1963 and a PhD in astronomy from the University of Pittsburgh in 1973. Full time employment from 1969 onward accounted for the long time between degrees.
Tony Jenzano is best remembered for creating a celestial navigation program at the Morehead Planetarium of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for the astronauts in the Mercury and Gemini missions as well as many of the Apollo, Skylab, Apollo-Soyuz, and Shuttle astronauts.
Emil Rudolf Herzog, astronomer, and, since 1987, retired professor of mathematics at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, California, died peacefully of heart failure on April 23, 1998.