Gerd Lüdemann, age 74, passed away in Göttingen, Germany on Pentecost Sunday May 23, 2021.
For those who knew Gerd: The fact that he chose this date to be called back home, appears to be no coincidence and is just so like him, it is bound to put a smile on one’s face. Gerd lived his life to the fullest. Everything he did, he was PASSIONATE about.
his youth and young adulthood joy of playing tennis and chess competitively; his path of diligent study and hard work that ultimately led to his globally successful career path — see:
his lifetime quest for the historic truth in his profession; his love of the “sweet stuff” in life: cakes at Cron und Lanz, apples fritters at Donut Den, cherry ice cream, any kind of chocolate just to name a few; his love of setting records of riding rollercoasters with his daughters and winning endless prizes with his amazing gaming skills at Opryland; his love for classical and country music which he would indulge in loudly and vocally; his love of competitive dancing with his wife; his love of spending time playing goofily with his children and grandchildren; his love of watching sporting events, especially cheering enthusiastically for the Nashville Predators and UT Volunteers; his love for simple pleasures, such as walking in the forest, listening to the birds sing, and feeding ducks and squirrels with his favorite foods.
Gerd was enthusiastic about everything that he pursued. He was drawn to the extremes, which contributed to his colorful and unique life.
Gerd was known as someone who “lived outside the box.” He traveled the world, relocating his family multiple times as his career evolved. He easily adapted to new places and new people, needing very little to be content. You could sense his genuine, authentic, free-spirited presence from afar. For example, he spoke from his heart with anybody he met, censored little what he said, and dressed as he pleased (to his wife’s and daughters’ embarrassment).
Gerd lived with Lewy Body Dementia for the past five years. Despite this illness Gerd never lost his interpersonal charm, humor, and love for life. He maintained his famous smile and ‘twinkle in the eye’ until the very end.
Gerd will leave a legacy as a truly remarkable researcher as well as a husband, father and grandfather with a big, generous heart. He will be greatly missed.
He was quite a provocateur and a very, very collegial friend.