A. G. Davis Philip
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A. G. Davis Philip, 87, died peacefully at the Capital Living Nursing and Rehabilitation Center on March 28, 2016. Born in NYC on January 9, 1929, he was the son of the late Van Ness and Lilian (Davis) Philip. He received his BS in Physics from Union College; MS in Astronomy from New Mexico State University (where he served in the US army for two years); and his PhD in Astronomy from Case Institute of Technology. He was an educator and editor but first and foremost a world-renowned astronomer. He traveled all over the world to do his observing and was the first American astronomer to use the 6-meter telescope at the Special Astrophysical Observatory in Russia in 1980 (the largest telescope in the world at the time). He collaborated with many colleagues, and his work was published in over 60 referred scientific journal articles and numerous conference proceedings. He is best known for his work on globular clusters, dense star clusters that orbit the Milky Way. With his brother K. W. Philip and others he published a book on fractals titled "Midgets on the Spike" in 1991. From 1988-1991 he and his brother went across the US and Canada on a lecture tour titled "An Introduction to the Mandelbrot Set." He organized and chaired many meetings in the field of astronomy and edited and published the proceedings. He published 23 books through L. Davis Press. For 10 years he administered the Harlow Shapley Visiting Lectureships program, which sends astronomers to colleges to spread the excitement of modern astronomy and astrophysics and to arouse interest in pursuing a career in astronomy. He was a Visiting Fellow at Yale, a Visiting Astronomer at Moletai Observatory (Lithuania), Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope (Arizona), and the CASLEO Observatory (Argentina). He taught at the University of New Mexico and SUNY at Albany and was a research professor of Astronomy at Union College. He was a member of numerous scientific societies amongst them the American Astronomical Society, the Royal Astronomical Society of England, and the Lithuanian Academy of Sciences. He was a founder and longtime Secretary and Treasurer of the New York Astronomical Corporation and Astronomical Society of New York. He was also an enthusiastic member of the H. Rider Haggard Society. He loved to travel and went around the world in both directions, East to West and West to East. He was a collector of turtle memorabilia and amassed a collection of around 800 from his travels and as gifts. He was an excellent photographer and documented his travels with numerous photographs. Along with his wife Kristina, he took annual trips to England to go to the theatre and visit friends. He fulfilled his life goal of visiting every continent by a trip to Antarctica in 2008. He had a particular affection for the small town of Tepotzlan, Mexico where he first photographed the villagers when he was a young man. He took photographs in subsequent years, and after 25 years he did a photo/slide presentation in the village square. Many of the villagers recognized themselves as young children and saw their parents and grandparents. He and his family took annual visits to Alaska, a state they all loved, to visit his brother and family. He was predeceased by his parents and his beloved brother, K. W. Philip. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Kristina; daughter, Elizabeth; grandsons, Ethan and Sullivan; brother, Peter Philip; nephews, William, Thomas, and Peter; and sister-in-law, Laima Drobavicius. We will miss him. Arrangements are by the Bond Funeral Home Broadway and Guilderland Avenue, Schenectady. Online condolences can be made at www.bondfuneralhome.com .


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Published in The Daily Gazette Co. on Apr. 22, 2016.
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