Sunday, January 17, 2016

Wise, Terrifically Eloquent, Modest, Momentous

Piers Sellers has written about his terminal cancer and how he is dealing with it.  Perhaps not the sort of thing often seen in the New York Times or commented on at Rabett Run.

Sellers, a former astronaut, Deputy Director of Science at Goddard Space Flight Center and Acting Head of the Earth Sciences Division, has lead a full life likely to be cut short.

Having read the article Eli takes away the same feeling that one of the writers to the Times, nick fras did.  An amazing piece, wise, terrifically eloquent, modest and momentus.

I have never read anything that captures so well the joys, privileges and responsibilities of being a scientist.


Hank Roberts said...

Thank you.

David B. Benson said...


afeman said...

He's not kidding in the last line.

Mal Adapted said...

I was acquainted with Dr. Sellers when I worked in the Laboratory for Terrestrial Physics at Goddard Space Flight Center. I didn't know he was now acting division director, but I'm not surprised. Science is as meritocratic a profession as any, and more than some.

I'm deeply sorry to learn that he's terminally ill. I'm grateful for his service to Science, to his adopted country, and not least for his moving NYT piece. We should all hope to face our ends with such courage, and to leave such a valediction if that's what it turns out to be.

Dano said...

Tremendous essay. I bet it will be required reading in a LOT of classes in the next year.



john Mruzik said...


Bob Loblaw said...

It's sad to hear that Piers is terminally ill. A great little essay in the NYT piece.

I knew Piers when he was a NASA co-lead on the BOREAS project in the mid-1990s. I remember the science meeting where they announced he was becoming an astronaut and leaving the project. He was so excited about the change, even though it meant he'd be getting paid less.

An extremely capable individual, and an all-around good bloke.

Here's to you, Eyeball!

Bob Loblaw

shubclimate said...

Not to worry, no skeptic is waiting for the funeral for science to progress.