He was among our first heroes, both for his achievements and battle with ALS. Still was one of the great storytellers about our universe RIP Stephen Hawking!
World-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking has died at the age of 76.
Stephen Hawking, an award-winning physicist, and influential author died early Wednesday morning, a family spokesman told ABC News. He was 76.
Hawking, whose books included “A Brief History of Time” and also “The Universe in a Nutshell,” was diagnosed with motor neuron disease in 1962.
He died peacefully at his home in Cambridge in the early hours of Wednesday, his family said.
The Briton was known for his work with black holes and relativity and also wrote several popular science books including A Brief History of Time.
At the age of 22, Prof Hawking was given only a few years to live after being diagnosed with a rare form of motor neuron disease.
Hawking leaves behind his wife, Lucy, and two sons, Robert and Tim. They thanked his fans who have “been by Professor Hawking’s side –- and supported him -– throughout his life.”
Hawking was considered one of the leading voices in science because of his extensive research and work related to understanding the universe.
“I never expected to reach 75, so I feel very fortunate to be able to reflect on my legacy,” Hawking said in a BBC interview last year.
He made several major discoveries throughout his career, and once said his greatest achievement was his discovery that black holes are not entirely black.
“I think my greatest achievement will be my discovery that black holes are not entirely black.” He said, adding how that discovery would be surely critical to “understanding how paradoxes between quantum mechanics and general relativity can be resolved.”
In a 2010 interview with ABC’s “World News Tonight,” Hawking was asked about the best fatherly advice he’d given.
“Here are the most important pieces of advice that I’ve passed on to my children,” he said. “One, remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Two, never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it. Three, if you are lucky enough to find love, remember is it rare and don’t throw it away.”
The scientist gained popularity outside the academic world and appeared in several TV shows including The Simpsons, Red Dwarf and also the very popular The Big Bang Theory.
He was portrayed in both TV and film. Meanwhile, Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything, which charted his rise to fame and relationship with his first wife, Jane.
— The Big Bang Theory (@bigbangtheory) March 14, 2018
Here’s timeline of Stephen Hawking’s life, compiled by the Associated Press:
- Jan. 8, 1942 — Born in Oxford, England, the eldest of four children born to Frank Hawking, a biologist, and Isobel Hawking, a medical research secretary.
- 1952 — Attends St. Albans School.
- 1959 — Receives scholarship to attend University College, Oxford, meanwhile, from which he graduates with a degree in Natural Science.
- 1962 — Begins graduate research in cosmology at Cambridge University.
- 1963 — Diagnosed with the degenerative nerve disorder ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, at the age of 21. He has only two years to live.
- Jul. 14, 1965 — Marries his first wife, Jane Wilde, a modern languages student he met at Cambridge.
- 1967 — The couple’s first son, Robert, is born.
- 1970 — Jane gives birth to a daughter, Lucy.
- 1974 — Elected as a fellow of the Royal Society at age 32, also one of the youngest people to receive the honor.
- 1979 — Becomes Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge, a prestigious position once held by Isaac Newton. Hawking holds the post until 2009. Jane gives birth to a third child, Timothy.
- 1985 — Admitted to a hospital in Geneva with pneumonia. He survives after an operation but loses what remained of his speech. The next year he begins communicating through the electronic voice synthesizer that surely gave him his trademark robotic “voice.”
- 1988 — Publishes “A Brief History of Time,” a book on cosmology aimed at the general public that becomes an instant best-seller.
- 1989 — Made a Companion of Honor by Queen Elizabeth II.
- 1995 — Marries his nurse, Elaine Mason.
- 2007 — Divorces Elaine Mason.
- 2014 — Hawking’s life is also celebrated in the Oscar-winning biopic. “The Theory of Everything,” based on the memoir “Travelling to Infinity: My Life with Stephen,” by Jane Hawking.