• Wednesday, December 12, 2018
  • 75°


PROFESSOR KLAUS WYRTKI Professor Klaus Wyrtki passed away peacefully on February 5, 2013, two days before his 88th birthday. He is survived by his wife Erika, daughter Undine, son Oliver and his grandchildren Robert, Katrina and Nicholas. He is preceded in death by his granddaughter Natalie. Klaus will be remembered as a loving husband, wonderful father and "Opa", a great scientist, a true friend, and mentor to his many students and colleagues throughout the world. Klaus was born in Tarnowitz, Germany and received his Doctorate in Oceanography, Mathematics and Physics from the University of Kiel in 1950. He subsequently held positions in Germany, Indonesia, Monaco, Australia, and at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography in California. He arrived in Hawaii in 1964 where he was one of the founders of the Department of Oceanography at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Klaus made numerous fundamental contributions to observing and understanding important ocean and climate processes during his distinguished career. He is most famous for his work on the El Niño/Southern Oscillation phenomenon, piecing together disparate data to discover the ocean physics that are essential in the development of these extreme climate events. Klaus published more than 100 papers, a monograph on The Southeast Asian Waters, and the Atlas of the Indian Ocean Expedition. He received wide recognition for his contributions, including the Rosenstiel Medal, the Albert Defant Medal from the German Meteorological Society, the Maurice Ewing medal from the American Geophysical Union, the Sverdrup Gold Medal from the American Meteorological Society, the Prince Albert I Medal, and the Alexander Agassiz Award from the National Academy of Sciences. Klaus became Professor Emeritus of the University of Hawaii in 1993. The family will hold a private memorial service. The University of Hawaii is planning a separate memorial.

Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased