31 May 2017
Dear colleagues and students
I am very sad to have to inform you that Associate Professor Michael Lucas died in the early hours of Saturday morning, 27 May 2017. He passed away peacefully in his sleep.
This was to be Assoc Prof Lucas’s final year of service to the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Cape Town (UCT) before his retirement. His association with UCT began in 1977 when he was appointed as a temporary lecturer and research officer. In 1982 he accepted formal employment at the university as a senior research officer.
The Dean of Science, Professor Anton le Roex, said, “His love of the sea and all things marine biological is well known, and during his time at UCT he enthused many generations of students in the mysteries of the marine world and more recently the link to climate change. His recent book, co-authored with Mary and Bob Scholes, entitled Climate Change: Briefings from Southern Africa is testament to his deep love for the oceans and their interaction with the climate.”
Assoc Prof Lucas spent a great deal of his professional life on research cruises in the oceans around South Africa and in the North Atlantic. He helped guide the education and careers of many undergraduates and postgraduates. Many generations were inspired by his lectures in class and on field trips. He will be remembered for his charm and ability to effectively communicate science to a wide audience. He will be missed by those who knew and worked with him.
He is survived by his parents, Ian and Helen, his sisters, Cathy and Petey (all living in the UK), his two sons, Chris (29) and Jonny (14), and his partner, Wendy.
On behalf of UCT, I extend heartfelt condolences to Assoc Prof Lucas’s family, friends and colleagues for this sad loss.
Dr Max Price
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