From: email@example.com (Ken Edgett)
Subject: Re Gene Shoemaker
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 1997 11:17:24 -0700 (MST)
Dear Mars Educators, This is very sad news, but thought it should be shared. Many of you will remember that Gene Shoemaker was one of the co-discoverers of the comets that hit Jupiter 3 years ago this week. Ken Edgett ------------------------- >NEO News (7/18/97) > >Friends: > >I just received the shocking and tragic news of the death of Gene >Shoemaker, the founder and leading advocate of many NEO studies. Truly he >is the father of our field of science. Following is the initial notice >posted by Sky & Telescope. > >David Morrison > >----------------------------------------------------- > >Gene Shoemaker, 1928 - 1997 > >The world has lost one of its most renowned scientists with the death of >Eugene >Shoemaker at age 69. On the afternoon of July 18th, Gene and his wife, >Carolyn, >were involved in a car accident in central Australia. He was fatally injured; >Carolyn suffered broken ribs but is expected to recover. The pair had arrived >in Australia just six days before to study some of the continent's numerous >impact craters -- an annual trek Down Under that they'd made a habit in recent >years. > >Best known for his pioneering work in elucidating the mechanics of impacts and >in the discovery of Earth-crossing bodies, Gene gained worldwide fame in March >1993 for his discovery, with Carolyn and colleague David Levy, of a comet that >would strike Jupiter 16 months later. Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 was just one >of the >finds that made this husband-wife team the leading comet discoverers of this >century. They are also credited with discovering more than 800 asteroids. But >the one research interest he never tired of was Meteor Crater, the >kilometer-wide pit east of Flagstaff, Arizona. > >While still in his teens, Gene realized that someday astronauts would walk on >the Moon, and from that point forward his whole professional life would be >directed toward becoming one of them. But a medical condition prevented him >from ever being selected for the Apollo program. "Not going to the Moon and >banging on it with my own hammer has been the biggest disappointment in life," >he said last year. "But then, I probably wouldn't have gone to Palomar >Observatory to take some 25,000 films of the night sky with Carolyn -- she >scanned them all -- and we wouldn't have had the thrills of finding those >funny >things that go bump in the night."