Stephen Hawking Has Died Aged 76

Obituary: Stephen Hawking

His father, a research biologist, had moved with his mother from London to escape German bombing. After completing his schooling, he went to Oxford University for his undergraduate and later did a Ph.D.at Cambridge.

As a teenager he had enjoyed horse-riding and rowing but while at Cambridge he was diagnosed with a form of motor neurone disease which was to leave him nearly completely paralysed. He and his first wife, Jane Wilde, Wednesday when he was still a grad student and remained together for 30 years before divorcing in 1995.

But the disease progressed more slowly than expected. He used a speech generating device to communicate. Hawking authored "A Brief History of Time" in 1988, which sold more than 10 million copies. His great discoveries and work include Hawking radiation, Penrose-Hawking theorems, and many more. He was renowned for his extraordinary capacity to visualise scientific solutions without calculation or experiment.

A family spokesman said he died peacefully at his home in the city of Cambridge where he worked for decades as the Lucasian Professorship of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge. If so, how will it end?

"We have lost a colossal mind and a wonderful spirit".

Hawking's distinctive electronic voice was prominently featured on the song "Keep Talking" which was the lead single from the 1994 Pink Floyd album, The Division Bell.

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In 2007, Hawking published a children's book, "George's Secret Key to the Universe", with his daughter, Lucy, seeking to explain the workings of the solar system, asteroids, his pet subject of black holes and other celestial bodies.

But his condition inevitably made him dependent on others. In an interview with New Scientist magazine, Hawking said there was still one puzzle left for him. He may have injured himself multiple times while riding his electric wheelchair as he visited the emergency department at Addenbrooke's Hospital multiple times.

Hawking's genius brought him global fame and he become known as a witty communicator dedicated to bringing science to a wider audience. No action was taken. "At first I became depressed". He said he did it to encourage interest in space travel.

He believed that life on Earth was at an ever-increasing risk of being wiped out by a disaster, such as asteroid strikes, epidemics, over-population and climate change.

"I think the human race has no future if it doesn't go into space", he said. "I therefore want to encourage public interest in space". His life was dramatized in the 2014 movie, "The Theory of Everything."

The role helped earn Hawking a place as a pop-culture icon - he joked he was often mistaken for a character on "The Simpsons" - and he praised the series as "the best thing on American television".

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