Branko Grünbaum, a professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of Washington who was known worldwide in his field, died September 14, 2018 at age 88. He was born in Osijek, Croatia (at the time part of Yugoslavia) in 1929, and was married for 61 years to his high-school sweetheart, Zdenka (Bienenstock) Grünbaum. Having survived the Holocaust in Yugoslavia, they emigrated to Israel in 1949.
Branko was a devoted and involved father and grandfather, a prolific scholar with wide-ranging interests, fluent in five languages, and a lover of the outdoors and especially the Pacific Northwest mountains and coast. He earned MSc and PhD degrees at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, along the way serving in the Israeli Air Force as an analyst. After working at the Institute for Advanced Studies in Princeton, Hebrew University and Michigan State U., he became a full professor at the University of Washington in Seattle in 1966, where he researched and taught for the next 35 years.
Zdenka preceded him in death in 2015. They are survived by their sons: Rami, with wife Galya and their daughters, Mara and Sasha (and her wife Roxana); and Danny, with wife Martha and their sons Maks and Sam.
A memorial gathering in their honor will be held Saturday, Sept. 29, at 1:00 p.m, at Aljoya Thornton Creek, where they had an apartment since 2011.
Donations in their memory can be made to UW's F.L. Campbell First-Generation Student Endowed Scholarship Fund, via uw.edu/make-a-gift
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Published by The Seattle Times from Sep. 20 to Sep. 21, 2018.