In Memoriam Tom Bopp (1949-2018)

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Peter Jedicke
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In Memoriam Tom Bopp (1949-2018)

Post by Peter Jedicke » January 8th, 2018, 5:40 pm

Word has reached us that Tom Bopp passed away 2018-01-06. This was reported on the RASC national discussion list, where the source of information was given as Phil Plait's Twitter feed. Tom's death is now included on his Wikipedia page. That's all the confirmation I can offer at the present time. No details of his death are available yet.

Tom discovered the comet that bears his name in the summer of 1995, almost exactly at the same time as it was also discovered by Alan Hale. Tom was in Arizona, using a friend's 50cm telescope at a star night. Comet Hale-Bopp was alongside one of the globular clusters in Sagittarius. (It was M70, according to Wikipedia.)

I met Tom on 1996-06-03 at a conference in Albuquerque NM. Tom, Alan Hale, David H. Levy and I discussed organizing a series of lectures to take advantage of the comet's news value. As a result, Tom came to southern Ontario a few times, including a visit to Starfest that summer. Many London Centre members also got to meet Tom at our club meeting on 1997-02-21, when he and David were our Guests of Honour. Tom enjoyed being in the limelight and meeting other amateur astronomers so much that he continued to give lectures and make public appearances for a long while after I lost touch with him.

I am saddened by his passing.
Peter Jedicke, FRASC
London Centre Honorary President (1996-)

"Much is too strange to be believed, but nothing is too strange to have happened." (Thomas Hardy)

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Re: In Memoriam Tom Bopp (1949-2018)

Post by HenryL » January 15th, 2018, 4:43 pm

Wonderful anecdotes Peter.

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