World renowned theoretical physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking has died.
He was 76.
A family spokesperson confirmed the news late Tuesday night. The legendary scientist’s children, Lucy, Robert, and Tim released the following statement to The Guardian:
“We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today. He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years. His courage and persistence with his brilliance and humour inspired people across the world. He once said, ‘It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.’ We will miss him forever.”
Hawking was widely considered to be the world’s greatest living scientist. Hawking is responsible for groundbreaking discoveries, including learning that black holes aren’t entirely black; they emit radiation. He was also an author — his most popular book being A Brief History Of Time, which has sold over 10 million copies to date.
When he was 21, Hawking was diagnosed with ALS. In 1963, doctors predicted he only had a few more years, but he persevered, famously using a speech synthesizer to communicate via computerized voice. The 2014 film The Theory Of Everything, starring Eddie Redmayne as Hawking, showcased the astronomer’s life, highlighting his career and two marriages.
His loss is greatly felt, not just throughout the science community, but in all the cosmos. See some of the most passionate Twitter reactions (below): (more…)