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Ferruccio Ritossa 1936-2014

It is with sadness that I bring news of the passing of Ferruccio Ritossa on January 9, 2014 in Bologna, Italy.  A few of us had the good fortune to reconnect with Ferruccio over the past few years thanks to the celebrations organized for him in Italy by the CSSI.  These events included the awarding of the CSSI medallion to Ferruccio in 2010 in recognition of the 50th anniversary of his discovery of the heat shock response that started our field.  Ferruccio was also an accomplished sculptor and you can see a collection of his works here in the menu bar link.  In 2013, Gabriella Santoro and I organized a symposium in Rome that honored Ferruccio by bringing together his two passions, science and the arts.  We had the opportunity to meet his gracious wife and family along with longtime colleagues during a celebration of the art of living with stress drawn from his biological discoveries and his compelling poetry along with music, writings and scientific presentations by friends and colleagues.  We were struck by Ferruccio’s modesty and his love for humanity and nature, shown through his life and works.  He will be greatly missed.  We will carry his spirit and memory with us for inspiration.

Larry Hightower

Secretary-Treasurer, CSSI

Ferruccio at the microscope in the early 1960's, cover image of CSAC 17(2)

CSSI President Antonio De Maio presents medallion to Ferrucio in Dozza, Italy, 2010

Ferruccio accepting CSSI Medallion for Career Achievement