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George Eugene Ryschkewitsch passed on September 10, 2013 at the Haven Hospice of Gainesville. He was born in 1929 in Frankfurt, Germany to Eugene and Else Ryshkewitch. He met his wife Wuni at Wright Field in Dayton Ohio where both their families were living as part of a community of German scientists brought to this country after World War II. After earning his PhD from the Ohio State University, he joined the faculty of the Department of Chemistry of the University of Florida in 1956 where he taught and performed research in the chemistry of boron until 1994. He was Teacher of the Year and left a legacy of many productive scientists and physicians. A lover of the natural beauties of North Florida and avid snorkeler, he became a scuba diver in 1967. He was an early pioneer in underwater cave exploration and a passionate underwater photographer. His wife was his dive partner as they traveled to dive sites around the world. He retired from diving at age 83. He won a number of awards for his photographs and enjoyed making presentations to share his travels and photographs. A series of his images are in the ichthyology section of the on-line collection of the Florida State Museum.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Wunhild, his children and their spouses, Michael and Caroline, Peter and Susan, Frances and Gabriel, goddaughter Dianne Grisham and their grandchildren Peter, Philip, Samantha, Kathryn, Katja and Sarah. He was preceded in death by his grandson, Jonathan Zinsli.
A celebration of his life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that any donations be made in his memory to the Daytona State College Jonathan M.R. Zinsli Scholarship Fund for photography students or to the E.T. York Haven Hospice of Gainesville. Arrangements are in the care of Forest Meadows Funeral Home (352) 378-2528. An online guestbook is available for condolences at www.forestmeadowsfh.com.
Forest Meadows Funeral Home and Cemeteries
725 NW 23rd Avenue Gainesville, FL 32609
Published in Gainesville Sun from Sept. 15 to Sept. 23, 2013