Wednesday, 20 July 2005

Mars again

Some of you may have missed this. Professor Colin Pillinger of the Open University has been diagnosed as suffering from Multiple Sclerosis (details here). Professor Pillinger is famously a big fan of Charles Darwin and that's why the Mars probe was called Beagle 2 - the plans for Beagle 3, another Mars explorer, have already been unveiled. Professor Pillinger was honoured recently when the International Astronomical Union named an asteroid after him. Asteroid 15614 is now named 'Pillinger' and moves between Mars and Jupiter.

2 careful considerations:

Bluefluff said...

I shared this story with some friends a couple of days ago. Two of them replied with stories of their own relatives' experience of MS. I was touched by Colin's reluctance to "cash in" on his public profile by switching his attentions to MS research. He could do good that way, but arguably he does more good by not letting this evil disease divert him from his life's work.

Nogbad said...

I agree that he's dealing with this in a wonderful way - it would be far to easy to roll over and go for the sympathy vote. As you know my longest serving friend has been dealing with MS for the last eight years and I've seen how his life has been changed by it but it isn't necessarily the "death sentence" that other illnesses represent and Pillinger is in his 60s so, arguably, has been spared the pain of many who contract this horrible condition between the age of 20 and 40 (the usual age range). More power to his elbow!