It?s a sad day in the world of astrophysics. Dr. James Van Allen has passed away. He was 91.
For those who don?t know, the Doctor was a brilliant man that pushed the science of space exploration far beyond what it could have been. He did the Math. He designed the satellites. He taught the other scientists. The Van Allen Belts of radiation surround the Earth. He was what you would call a Rocket Scientist.
The Doctor had another reputation. He was a good man who treated people with respect and friendliness. He was a good teacher.
I never had the fortune to meet the man. I did do some repairs on some equipment in Van Allen Hall at the University of Iowa (none of the interesting equipment, mind you).
Van Allen was, of course, 91 years old. He lived a very productive life. If I can have just a small percentage of the positive influence that Dr. Van Allen had, I will consider my life well lived.
Good bye, Dr. Van Allen, and thank you for all you?ve done.
You gotta pick the right guy to do the job.
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