*In memory of Dr. Duane Guernsey

April 10, 1946 - August 19, 2011
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In memory of Dr. Duane Guernsey

The IGNITE team was greatly saddened by the unexpected loss of Dr. Duane Guernsey in August, 2011. An integral member of the team, Duane was a passionate researcher, who was responsible for some of the earlier gene discoveries that helped to propel the project to its current status.

Dr. Guernsey was dedicated to the world-class research of the team, and his contribution, quick wit and determination will be felt individually, and as a group, for years to come.

His official obituary follows:

DR. DUANE L. GUERNSEY of Halifax, age 65 peacefully passed away. He was the son of the late Duane Livingston Guernsey, Jr. of Rochester, New York and the late Harriett Gould (nee) Davenport Guernsey of Scranton, Pennsylvania. He is survived by his son, Read Frederick Guernsey of Ottawa, his wife, Dr. Judith Read Guernsey, of Halifax, his sister Sarah Guernsey Carr of Lewes, Delaware, nephews Garry Carr of Los Angeles, California and Stephen Carr of Tokyo, Japan, and his partner Susan Evans of Halifax.

Before beginning his medical career, Dr. Guernsey served with distinction for six years in the United States Navy, the first three years as a Lieutenant aboard a Liberty Ship in Vietnam. He grew up in Lutherville Maryland, then studied and worked at Lehigh University (B.A. in Biology, 1968), The University of Bridgeport (M.S in Biology 1974) and The University of Hawaii (Ph.D in Medical Physiology 1978) and completed a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University in NYC.

He spent the last 23 years of his distinguished career at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia as a professor in Pathology, Physiology, Biophysics, Ophthalmology, Visual Science, and Surgery. He was also the Division Director of Molecular Pathology and Molecular Genetics.

During his lifelong career in medical research he won numerous awards including the National Research Service Award and the Pfizer Prize for Neurosciences and Diseases of the Nervous System. At Dalhousie he served on six academic committees where he also served as an external reviewer for numerous professional journals and grant reviews. He is credited, along with collaborative colleagues, for publishing over 71 peer reviewed published papers, 3 submitted manuscripts, and 78 abstract presentations at international meetings.

He lectured and taught graduate and undergraduate medical courses throughout his career, many who appreciated his breadth of knowledge of science as well as his great sense of humour and, in the early days, his ugly tie collection. Often seen with the latest novel in hand, he was well loved by many of his colleagues and students with whom he became very dear friends. He will be missed by all who experienced his quiet dignity, wry sense of humour, kind demeanor, and passion for science and cooking.

A gathering of family, friends and colleagues was held on Thursday October 6th at the Saraguay Club, Purcell's Cove Road, in Halifax. Online condolences may be sent or viewed through www.cruikshankhalifaxfuneralhome.com and donations may be made to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation or the Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation in his memory.