Paleonet: Fwd: [Science News] The Natural News for January 4, 2017 (Plotnick, Roy E)

Андрей Журавлев ayzhur at
Fri Jan 6 09:23:44 GMT 2017

It was a great pleasure to collaborate with Matt on receptaculitids and other odds during his visits to Moscow, Leningrad, and Novosibirsk. The book on "Co-Evolution" edited by him is among my favorite ones still.
Andrey Zhuravlev

>Четверг,  5 января 2017, 21:23 UTC от paleonet-request at
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>   1. Re:  Fwd: [Science News] The Natural News for January 4, 2017
>      (Plotnick, Roy E)
>Message: 1
>Date: Thu, 5 Jan 2017 15:24:01 -0600
>From: "Plotnick, Roy E" < plotnick at >
>To: PaleoNet < paleonet at >
>Subject: Re: Paleonet: Fwd: [Science News] The Natural News for
>January 4, 2017
>Message-ID: < ccf7cd0d-ab2d-bf88-7fa3-234ae24ed667 at >
>Content-Type: text/plain; charset="utf-8"; Format="flowed"
>Didn't write it, just passing on. He was quite a character. - Roy
>On 1/5/2017 2:26 PM, Jere LIPPS wrote:
>> Thank you, Roy for the sad news about Matthew.  He certainly lived an 
>> interesting and, at times I imagine, discouraging, life.  Although he 
>> and I had a number of conversations and communications, I did not see 
>> him often enough to understand much of what you wrote.  I appreciate 
>> that write-up, as I always found his work interesting and useful--it 
>> still is, as you point out.  And he was a fun guy, as I could tell 
>> from a few encounters with him.    I am sorry to see him go, but what 
>> a life!!
>> */Jere/*
>> */
>> /*
>> */Jere H. Lipps/*
>>  */jlipps at <mailto: jlipps at >/*
>> On Thu, Jan 5, 2017 at 11:20 AM, Hasiotis, Stephen Tom 
>> < hasiotis at <mailto: hasiotis at >> wrote:
>>     Sad news indeed. Thank you for sharing this with us, Roy. I was
>>     just flipping through /Evolution of Animal Behavior/ that he
>>     coedited with Kitchell in 1986. What a great resource.
>>     May his memory be eternal +
>>     Steve
>>     ***************************************
>>     Stephen T. Hasiotis, Ph.D.
>>     Professor of Geology
>>     The University of Kansas Department of Geology
>>     1475 Jayhawk Blvd., rm. 120
>>     Lindley Hall
>>     Lawrence, KS 66045-7594
>>     Office: 785-864-4941 <tel:%28785%29%20864-4941>
>>     Fax: 785-864-5276 <tel:%28785%29%20864-5276>
>>  hasiotis at <mailto: hasiotis at >
>>     KU Ichnology: _ < >_
>>     ****************************************
>>     *From: *Paleonet < paleonet-bounces at
>>     <mailto: paleonet-bounces at >> on behalf of "Plotnick, Roy
>>     E" < plotnick at <mailto: plotnick at >>
>>     *Organization: *University of Illinois at Chicago
>>     *Reply-To: *PaleoNet < paleonet at <mailto: paleonet at >>
>>     *Date: *Thursday, January 5, 2017 at 1:06 PM
>>     *To: *PaleoNet < paleonet at <mailto: paleonet at >>
>>     *Subject: *Paleonet: Fwd: [Science News] The Natural News for
>>     January 4, 2017
>>     ?From the Field Museum: *
>>     Matthew Nitecki, 1925 ? 2016*
>>     We are sad to announce that Matt Nitecki, Curator Emeritus of
>>     Invertebrate Paleontology at The Field Museum, died on December
>>     21, 2016, after a long illness. Matt came to the Museum in 1965
>>     after having served as curator of the Walker Museum at the
>>     University of Chicago. When the Walker closed, Matt oversaw the
>>     transfer of its 720,000 specimens of fossil invertebrates to the
>>     Field, and came along with them as Curator.
>>     Matthew H. Nitecki was born in Poland in 1925, and left with his
>>     mother and brothers in 1939 when Germany invaded Poland. After
>>     living in Romania and France, he attempted to join the Polish Army
>>     via England, but was jailed in Spain for illegally crossing the
>>     border while trying to get to Gibraltar. Eventually released to
>>     the Red Cross under a general amnesty of political prisoners under
>>     the age of 18, he made it to England, became a paratrooper in the
>>     Polish Army, and survived the Battle of Arnhem, well known from
>>     the book and movie /A Bridge Too Far/. Matt lived in England for
>>     several years after the war, going to school, including one year
>>     at the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Edinburgh, and
>>     then emigrated to the United States with his parents and twin
>>     brother. While working in Detroit, he saw a poster advertising the
>>     University of Chicago, and decided to enroll. He earned his
>>     Master?s and Ph.D. degrees from Chicago a few years later.
>>     Matt was a prolific scientist, authoring more than 150 articles
>>     and writing or editing 25 books and monographs, including what for
>>     years was the standard reference on Mazon Creek fossils. His
>>     special interests were ?problematic? fossils and the history of
>>     evolution, and he was considered the world expert on
>>     Receptaculitids (enigmatic Paleozoic marine fossils of
>>     indeterminate and contested phylogenetic placement, but currently
>>     considered to be a group of algae). He taught geology field
>>     courses in places like Starved Rock State Park, Galena and Apple
>>     Rock Canyon in Illinois, the Missouri Ozarks, and the Grand
>>     Canyon. He also ran the Museum?s Spring Systematics Symposium for
>>     many years (of which more later). Like most curators, Matt kept
>>     working after he ?retired? in 1996, continuing his research on
>>     algae and problematic fossils. His book, /Receptaculitids: A
>>     Phylogenetic Debate on a Problematic Fossil Taxon/, was published
>>     in 1999, and other book chapters and articles followed into the
>>     early 2000s. His most recent project was a bibliography of 19^th
>>     century paleontologist James Hall, co-edited with his wife (and
>>     Field Museum Research Associate) Doris Nitecki and colleague Alan
>>     Horowitz; it was submitted for publication a few days after his death.
>>     It is almost inescapable to consider some scientists ?characters,?
>>     especially those with a few decades of fieldwork and academic
>>     battles under their belts. But someone who fled Nazism, did time
>>     in a Spanish prison, parachuted into the Battle of Arnhem, and
>>     became an expert on enigmatic fossils, must be considered a
>>     character of a different order. Matt will be remembered as an
>>     accomplished scientist, a gracious host at his and Doris? home in
>>     the Indiana Dunes, and as a pint-sized, raspy-voiced, mischievous
>>     imp?but for many, Matt will always be first and foremost the
>>     mastermind of the renowned Spring Systematics Symposia in the
>>     1980s?still remembered by old-timers at the University of Chicago
>>     as ?the Nitecki talks.? Most of these symposia resulted in edited
>>     volumes, many of which are still in print. But more than that,
>>     many of these events packed the Museum?s James Simpson Theater
>>     with people eager to learn about the latest research or scientific
>>     controversy from experts recruited from around the world. It was a
>>     different time?no internet, no social media, cable TV just
>>     dawning?but these symposia were successful because of Matt?s
>>     foresight in choosing the right topics at the right time, and his
>>     passionate and energetic follow-through. Today institutions like
>>     ours continue to seek new ways to advance public understanding of
>>     science, while pushing the frontiers of knowledge and grappling
>>     with a broad range of global issues. Yet Matt was able to
>>     routinely get 500-plus people?a mix of academics and interested
>>     lay people?into the seats of a scientific symposium, year after
>>     year. Matt truly made the Museum a hub for the dissemination of
>>     scientific knowledge?a great accomplishment, and a huge
>>     contribution to The Field Museum, and to science more broadly.
>>     *
>>     *
>>     **
>>     _______________________________________________
>>     Paleonet mailing list
>>  Paleonet at <mailto: Paleonet at >
>>     < >
>> _______________________________________________
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>Roy E. Plotnick
>Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences
>University of Illinois at Chicago
>845 W. Taylor St.
>Chicago, IL 60607
>E-mail:  plotnick at
>office 2454 SES
>office phone: 312-996-2111     fax: 312-413-2279
>lab phone: 312-355-1342
>web page:
>"The scientific celebrities, forgetting their molluscs and glacial periods, gossiped about art, while devoting themselves to oysters and ices with characteristic energy.." -Little Women, Louisa  May Alcott
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