The passing of a great Ent

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dbhguru
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The passing of a great Ent

Post by dbhguru » Sun Dec 22, 2013 9:16 pm

Hello Everyone,

It is with the greatest sadness that I must announce the passing of my great friend and colleague Professor Gary Beluzo. He fought gallantly against the cancer that had metastasized, and in a final act of defiance, willed his body to the American Cancer Society for research.

Gary was an environmental science professor at Holyoke Community College, the Executive Director of Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest, and my partner in a variety of projects accomplished for the Massachusetts DCR relating to old growth forests. He also was my partner in the series of conferences collectively entitled the Forest Summit Lecture Series, offered as a public service. He was the lead conceptualizer and most productive member of the pair of us in a project to refine the boundaries of Liriodendron tulipifera in the Northeast. Gary was a member of NTS and was a regular contributor before a cancer operation.

Gary had many nature passions. He especially loved the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and spent time there over a period of many years. He conducted classes via the Internet from the Smokies. Gary's mentor was the late, great scientist Dr. Lynn Margulis. But Gary had another mentor, who was also Lynn's mentor: Mother Nature. He was happiest when in the field doing his research and communing with denizens of the forest, lakes, and ponds.

When my first wife Jani died, Gary and Lisa sat up with me all night, giving me emotional support. He was that kind of friend. For several years Gary, John Knuerr, and I roamed the forests together comically presenting ourselves as the "Tree Amigos." During that period, we also inventoried and mapped the old growth forest remnants of Massachusetts. Those were golden days that I shall never forget.

It is my intention to write an essay in memory of my great friend. It is the only way I know how to do my part in telling a piece of a larger story about this wonderful human being whom so many of us loved. Lisa, Gary's devoted wife, has lost her husband and best friend. Gary's children have lost a model father. Many have lost a treasured friend. The Earth has lost a dedicated warrior. But I wouldn't want to paint Gary only as an environmental scientist. He was a great husband, a great father, a giving friend, a fine musician, and a spiritual seeker. We shall miss him very much.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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Steve Galehouse
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by Steve Galehouse » Sun Dec 22, 2013 9:58 pm

Very sorry to hear of Gary's passing, my condolences to Lisa and family.
every plant is native somewhere

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Matt Markworth
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by Matt Markworth » Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:46 pm

Bob,

I'm so sorry to hear this. You are in my thoughts.

Thoreau helps me reflect in times like these . . . "Every blade in the field-every leaf in the forest-lays down its life in its season, as beautifully as it was taken up." . . . yet it's so terribly difficult to understand how very short our life's season can be.

Matt

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Larry Tucei
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by Larry Tucei » Tue Dec 24, 2013 10:38 am

Bob- I'm sorry to hear of the loss of such a great Friend, Father and person. My condolences to his family and friends. Although I never met Gary I feel like I know him through is communication with me at NTS. He was a great man and I will miss him. Larry

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ElijahW
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by ElijahW » Tue Dec 24, 2013 1:11 pm

Bob,

My condolences on Mr. Beluzo's passing. You mentioned him often and I'm sorry that you've lost such a great friend. God bless and have mercy,

Elijah
"There is nothing in the world to equal the forest as nature made it. The finest formal forest, the most magnificent artificially grown woods, cannot compare with the grandeur of primeval woodland." Bob Marshall, Recreational Limitations to Silviculture in the Adirondacks

Joe

Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by Joe » Tue Dec 24, 2013 3:04 pm

I particularly enjoyed the discussion with Gary and others on the subject of autopoietic forests: http://www.ents-bbs.org/viewtopic.php?f=213&t=3524

I had been wondering why Gary hadn't been posting in this forum for some time and now I presume it was his health problems. I was planning on reviving that discussion, which we'll now have to do without his deep insite on the subject.
Joe

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Jess Riddle
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by Jess Riddle » Tue Dec 24, 2013 9:18 pm

Bob,

This is sad news indeed. I only met Gary a few time, but he and Lisa were always extraordinarily welcoming. My condolences to you and Lisa and Gary's children.

Jess

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dbhguru
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Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by dbhguru » Tue Dec 24, 2013 9:33 pm

Jess and others,

Thanks. Gary's passing is an irreplaceable loss. It is one of the prices we pay for being human.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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tomhoward
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Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2010 5:15 pm

Re: The passing of a great Ent

Post by tomhoward » Sat Jan 04, 2014 7:45 pm

NTS,

I am deeply sorry about Gary's passing. He seems to have been an amazing person, and I wanted to meet him. My condolences to his family and the rest of all of you who love trees.

Tom Howard

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