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This memorial is sponsored by:

Kelly Smith

Memorial created 05-31-2009 by
Kelly Smith
Jerry A Waldvogel
December 24 1953 - May 30 2009

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06-07-2009 7:42 PM -- By: Greg Schlax,  From: Lake Forest,Il  

My heartfelt condolance to the Waldvogel family. Although he left too early, a generation has been inspired by this man who truly followed his dream, That is more than can be said of most of us.



06-07-2009 7:11 PM -- By: Andrea Simmons,  From: Barrington RI  

I am shocked and saddened to hear of Jerry's death.  Jerry and I were friends during his Cornell years.  I recall many a GXA party, full of music and laughter and much needed stress release.  I can still picture him at the pigeon lofts at Langmuir Lab, with his big hat and his orange truck.   When I left Cornell to take my position at Brown, Jerry's going away present for me was  a box of  custom-made  tapes of his favorite songs (heavy on the Grateful Dead and Little Feat).  Many years later, my daughter found these tapes in my old Volvo, and they served as her introduction to really good music.  Jerry and I lost touch until 2 years ago, when my son Ryan met him at Shoals.  Even though Ryan was enrolled in another class, Jerry took him under his wing, anointing him an honorary member of the Shoals animal ecology course and just generally watching out for him.  Ryan thought he was just great.  Jerry's evaluation of Ryan (at least to his mother) said, "he sure knows how to have a good time!"    This past January, Jerry sent me a jpg of a photo of him and Sarah at the inauguration.  His love for his daughter was palpable.  Jerry was smart and kind and charismatic, with a great laugh, a huge smile, and a big heart.  I will miss him.   I am deeply sorry for his family's loss.

06-07-2009 6:51 PM -- By: Mike May,  From: Houston, Texas  

 Like many who wrote here, I met Jerry at Cornell. It was at a Halloween party--probably in the late 1980s--and he was dressed as Charles Darwin (a suprise to no one) and I was dressed as a Pope. Sometime during the party, he walked by me and just said, "Pope, we need to talk."

We didn\'t talk that night, but any time after that when we passed each other on campus, I\'d say, "Hey, Charles," and Jerry would just nod his head and say, "Pope." Eventually, we did talk, and even learned who the other really was.

Some years later, when we were both done at Cornell, we happened to be in Ithaca and stumbled over each other at a traffic light in College Town. We decided to have lunch together, where I told Jerry that I was struggling to become a science writer. He\'s just written an article for American Scientist, and he suggested that I submit one, too. I did. The editor at the magazine accepted my article, and eventually hired me as an associate editor--where I worked for eight years. So in many ways, Jerry helped to launch my career as a science writer.

Jerry and I kept in touch some over the years, and he even helped me with a story in the past year. Anyone interested, can see what Jerry (and others) told me about teaching at: www.techtyper.com/recent-articles/scientists-speak-out-on-tea ching. 

I will always appreciate the laughs and help that I received from Jerry. 

06-07-2009 6:50 PM -- By: Mike May,  From: Houston, Texas  

06-07-2009 3:19 PM -- By: Lynn Keeton Gamwell,  From: Carolina, RI  

06-07-2009 2:15 PM -- By: Mark Hoaglin,  From: San Diego  

Jerry and I were teammates in High School and at Stanford. He was responsible for talking me into going to Stanford and was a wonderful role model for me and other student athletes. I remember his positive attitude in spite of his being the center of a quarterback controversy while at Stanford. He had a gift for keeping things in the proper perspective. Our fathers were Marines together and we wound up going to high school and college together. Providence!

06-07-2009 11:22 AM -- By: Nancy Keeton,  From:  

Jerry was a good friend and an important part of our family while I was a teenager. He was my father's last graduate student and was always considered a star by my dad and the whole family. I remember him with great fondness and am fortunate to have had his influence and friendship in my life.

Thanks Jerry. I'll miss knowing you are there. God speed.

06-07-2009 8:48 AM -- By: Zenee Miller,  From: Orlando, FL  

Rest in Peace.  Thanks for being such a great professor at Clemson!  I really enjoyed your classes!

06-07-2009 12:13 AM -- By: Roger Butterfield,  From: Tampa  

Rest in peace.

06-06-2009 10:40 PM -- By: ,  From:  

Although I did not 'know' Dr. Waldvogel, I had recently come to learn very much of him. 

To read these sincere and loving inscriptions to his memory is to recognize how deeply his presence added to every life he encountered,  and would surely have added to this life of a fellow human -- one with a desperate 'need-to-know-everything'.

To feel a the loss of an unknown soul is to know the value of a known loved one.

May Dr. Waldvogel's beloved family know that God is with them in this heart-rending time ... and may we be reminded to keep precious lives in our midst, close, encouraged, and, above all, loved!

06-06-2009 10:31 PM -- By: Jason Nifong,  From: Myrtle Beach, SC  

Like so many great people who have helped shape my life, the world is a better place for having had Dr. Waldvogel in it. While my memories of him are numerous and fond, one of the most meaningful things, in my eyes, was the way he always took time to stop and speak with me when we passed though the halls, on the sidewalk, or elsewhere on campus. Here's to you, Dr. Waldvogel. 

06-06-2009 10:10 PM -- By: Gina Anastasi,  From: Los Angeles  

It feels like yesterday when we were all on campus. Jerry always had character and a sweet gentleness about him. I will try to find the flyer we made to run for Senior class officers--Jerry, Ray Anderson and Gerald Wilson--a bunch of football players and me--don't think we received many votes!

My prayers to family.

Gina --Stanford Class of '76

06-06-2009 5:50 PM -- By: Tammy Watt,  From: Stanford University Fellow Student  

Jerry is absolute proof that only the good die young. Wishing his friends and family peace, love and the faith that some day in the not too distant future, wonderful memories of the person he was and his incredible impact on everyone he met, will gradually begin to take away the pain of today.

06-06-2009 12:27 PM -- By: Jim Feiste,  From: Clemson, SC  

I've know Jerry since I moved here in 2004.  He convinced me in 2004 to take over his position as president of the Clemson Montessori School PTO (for which I still haven't forgiven him...LOL).  We worked closely on the board for 2 years, and still managed to remain friends!

Jerry allowed me to teach a seminar class on Podcasting along side of him (I had begged him for the privelege for years).   He was also always there to talk to me about the latest book on the science-religion contraversy.  He even introduced me to "Scarowinds" last fall. 

His daughter has become one of my daughter's closest friends, and Jerry, Sherry, and Sarah feel like members of our own family.  This will never change.

Jerry helped make me feel comfortable with the culture-shock that was my move to the upstate in 2004.  I always thought that as long as there were skeptical yet open-minded and incredibily intelligent yet down-to-earth people like Jerry around, I could live here. 

I miss him terribly.

06-06-2009 6:57 AM -- By: Pat Madsen,  From: Saint John, NB Canada  

With deepest sympathy

06-06-2009 12:35 AM -- By: Jen Johnson,  From: Greer, SC  

When I think back on my years as a student in Clemson, there are only a handful of teachers I remember.  Waldvogel was one of them - if not the main one.  I am now a high school teacher and when telling my kids about my college experiences, I always share with them his lesson on photosynthesis he taught with a football and how learning can be fun with the right teacher.  I am deeply saddened by this loss and want his family to know that they are in my thoughts and prayers.  He was an extraordinary teacher, an amazing person, and someone I will never forget.

06-05-2009 5:50 PM -- By: Eugenie C. Scott,  From: National Center for Science Education, Inc.  

I met Jerry when he and I served on the BSCS board, 1993-1999, and we have been good friends ever since -- though in the nature of academic lives, we didn't get together very frequently. We'd see one another at NABT, or at AAAS, or some other mutual conference. He invited me to speak at Clemson once, and we had a great time: he introduced me to a bunch of teachers he was working with, as well as his colleagues.

Even if it were only once or twice a year, seeing Jerry always brightened the moment. There was always that huge smile that took up his whole face. There was that great laugh. And of course, he and I always talked about the problems of teaching evolution. A few years back when we called SC scientists for help with the problem of creationism in the state science standards, Jerry was there to help, and take a leadership role.

He will be missed by so many. To Sherry and Sarah, whom I only met once (and they probably don't remember!) my most heartfelt condolences. Your loss of this wonderful man is so much greater than those of we friends, and all of us feel his loss so painfully.

06-05-2009 3:36 PM -- By: Douglas Fudge,  From: Shoals Marine Lab  

Jerry and I crossed paths on Appledore Island most summers since 1991, when I first went to the Shoals Marine Lab as a student. In thinking back about my interactions with Jerry, I’m realizing that he treated me exactly the same when I was a student as he did when I was a staff member, a graduate student, postdoc, and professor - always with kindness, respect and generosity. And to say that Jerry had a twinkle in his eye is to hugely underestimate his capacity for creating fun and mischief and delivering devastating satire. Jerry was a role model to many educators like myself, but even more importantly, his devotion as a husband, father, and friend was an inspiration to all of us who were lucky enough to have known him.

06-05-2009 1:58 PM -- By: Patti Connor-Greene,  From: Pineola, NC  

Jerry's exuberance inspired all of us who had the joy of working with him.  I never left a meeting or conversation with Jerry without being energized by his positive spirit.  Jerry  radiated his passion for teaching, learning, and living, and I am deeply grateful for his creativity and time that he shared so generously with his colleagues and students. 

06-05-2009 1:28 PM -- By: Pam Mack,  From: Clemson  

What a shock.  I am so sad that we have lost Jerry.  He contributed so much to education in so many ways.

06-05-2009 10:35 AM -- By: David Stalnaker,  From: Dallas, TX  

Jerry's passing is a great loss.  He was a very special person.

06-05-2009 10:22 AM -- By: Chip and Diane Egan,  From: Clemson  

06-04-2009 7:46 PM -- By: Julie Flanagan Conkright,  From: Crawfordsville, Indiana  

I have known Jerry ever since my sister Kim started dating Jeff, Jerry's younger brother. And from the very first time we met I realized what a special person he was. I was a just a young girl yet Jerry always had the time to talk, joke and yes throw the football with me. Hey he was the Stanford quarterback so that made me feel like I had won the lottery.

The world lost a one of a kind in this dear man. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and my own family as well.  

06-04-2009 5:15 PM -- By: Scott Templeton,  From: Clemson University  

Jerry and I didn't know each other well.  We would have brief conversations in Hendrix as we were waiting for our order of food.  I wish that I had known him better than I did.  Nonetheless, he impressed me with his happy spirit and his willingness to serve the university.  I admired his attitude.   The university community will sorely miss his numerous contributions. 

The last conversation that we had was about the NOVA documentary entitled 'Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial'.  I told him how the documentary had captured my attention because it had exposed intelligent design as scientific fraud and those who promoted it in Dover as dishonest in a balanced way.  Jerry said he had shown it twice in his classes. 

Thanks to Jerry for keeping the science of evolution in the biology textbooks and creation stories from religious texts out of the biology curriculum.  

Why do too many of the good die young?

May Jerry's family find solace. 

06-04-2009 2:04 PM -- By: Tom Good,  From: Seattle, WA  

06-04-2009 1:50 PM -- By: Catherine Paul,  From: Clemson University  

I'm sorry, Jerry, but even after reading all these tributes, seeing the official announcements, attending your beautiful memorial service, and trying to wrestle down my feelings of loss, I cannot believe that there will not be another time for us to talk about teaching, our students, poetry, learning, and why all these things matter so much.

06-04-2009 11:42 AM -- By: Ross Norton,  From: Clemson  

 We don't get to truly admire people often, but I admired Jerry. I think he represented the very best of us. 

06-04-2009 11:33 AM -- By: Edward "Ted" Doyle,  From:  

06-04-2009 11:05 AM -- By: Nate,  From: Rock Hill  

Dr. Waldvogel was an excellent educator with an obvious love and enthusiasm for the profession.  Clemson will miss him greatly.

06-04-2009 11:03 AM -- By: Joan Pettigrew, Program Coordinator,  From: Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Clemson Univ.  

Jerry Waldvogel was an instructor for the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Clemson University.  He voluntarily shared his knowledge and expertise with our members as the instructor for Current Topics In Energy courses.  Jerry taught for OLLI in Spring 2008, Fall 2008, and Spring 2008.  He was scheduled to teach again in the Fall 2009 session before he passed away.  His kindness and generosity will be missed.


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