Editor’s Note- I received a number of “letters to the editor” from Jerry Brown in 2009, and I was sorry to hear of his passing. I received this from my friends Dane Twichell and Tami Wedekind, and they asked that I share it with you.
To our community – Our dear friend and neighbor Jerry Brown passed on Feb 10. He was born and raised in the house his father built in Culver City. He was a very unique man. Just before his death, he sent out this email to a number of friends- Here is his piece, in honor of the magazine of the Griffith Observatory-
The February issue marks the magazine’s 75h anniversary. A continuous
75-year record of monthly publication is exceptional for for any
magazine, and unprecedented for a public place like Griffith Observatory.
The Observer is not quite the oldest astronomy magazine in the country.
But it is distinctive and useful. It has published original and unusual
articles, along with a sky calendar and star charts for most of its history.
The Griffith Observatory has always had a planetarium and a museum. It
puts people eyeball to the Universe. It’s the “hood ornament” of Los
Angeles on the best piece of public observatory real estate in the world.
I first visited the place on a grade-school field trip in 1941, and
still enjoy going there. To the northeast, Mt. Wilson, home of another
famous observatory, is visible; south to westward I see the Palos Verdes
hill and the ocean with, as darkness falls, a spectacular sea of lights in between.
The Foucault Pendulum still swings majestically just as it did all those
years ago, proving the Earth’s rotation. And the astronomical museum,
enhanced by the recent renovation, shows graphically how the Universe
works. A good show all around!
Happy anniversary, Griffith Observer!
This obituary was written by a friend at the Santa Monica Amateur Astronomers club.
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Brown by chance last month in Santa Monica. We were having a wonderful conversation about trains when I discovered we were neighbors. He was an interesting and engaged man. I’m sad to hear of his passing.