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In memoriam: Ger de Bruyn (1948-2017): More than Tall

Submitter: Jan Noordam, V.N.Pandey
Description: Ger struggled mightily to hold on until after WimSym77, of which he was the chief organiser. He succeeded, but on Sunday July 9th 2017 he had to give up the unequal battle with an aggressive illness.

A very promising student in Oort's Leiden, he was the only astronomer interviewed in the Teleac TV series who was not (yet) a doctor. After a period at CalTech, he was lured back to SRZM/ASTRON in 1976, and quickly became "Mr WSRT", one of the most productive and respected users of this wonderful radio telescope. He was a highly motivating force behind the continuous development of cutting-edge software and hardware for it, and devised and executed penetrating observing programs like the WENSS survey.

He was part of the group in Dwingeloo that first discussed the design of a Square Km Array. Of course he played a major role in the design and commissioning of the LOFAR telescope, and could be regarded as "Mr LOFAR" also. He was joint leader of its EoR Key Science Programme.

As a half-time professor in Groningen, he supervised a long line of brilliant PhD students, of whom he was very proud. Besides, he was a keen and talented sportsman (skating, tennis, running, billiards) and simply excellent company. His simplicity was as profound as his intellect and wit. We commiserate with Aline, Maya and Vikram.

A few years ago, a 4-year-old poetess coined the line "More than Tall" for Ger, who was very taken by it. And indeed it is apt because, thanks to the lovely ambiguity of the English language, it can have multiple meanings, all of them good. So many people can assign their own story with Ger to these three well-chosen words.

De uitvaart plechtigheid is op vrijdag 14 juli 15:00 in het Afscheidshuis Reestborgh, Edison 1, 7942 Meppel. Na afloop is er gelegenheid tot condoleeren. Een kaart voor de familie ligt ter ondertekening op de gebruikelijke plaats.

Copyright: ASTRON
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