* Neuroscience Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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  • Passing of Al Feng

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spregent@illinois.edu Sep 3, 2021 2:07 pm

Dear Colleagues,

 

     I too was very sorry to hear of Al’s passing.  Over the years I had a number of very pleasant opportunities to interact with Al in the Neuroscience program and in the Beckman Institute.

     He was always generous with his time and an excellent team player.  I still remember Al pulling together a team of Beckman researchers (including Bruce Wheeler and Charissa Lansing) to move from basic research on audition in noise (from some of his work with amphibians) to come up with a design for an intelligent hearing aid for humans.  Like you, I will miss him.

Sincerely,

Art

Reply to spregent@illinois.edu at 2:07 pm
spregent@illinois.edu Sep 3, 2021 10:11 am

So very sorry to hear of Al’s passing.

He was such a vital person, in both senses of the word – both in the sense of full of energy and full of life, and in the sense of essential in the life and success of the neuroscience program, the MIP dept, and the Neuronal Pattern Analysis group at the Beckman Institute.

And he was such a good soul, in every sense of that word, as all those of us lucky enough to have counted him as a friend or a mentor or a colleague or an inspiration can attest.

He will indeed be long remembered and sorely missed.

Neal

Reply to spregent@illinois.edu at 10:11 am
spregent@illinois.edu Sep 3, 2021 10:11 am

Al was the first NSP faculty member I met upon arriving to start my faculty position. He was NSP director at the time, and he made a point of reaching out within a few days of my arrival to personally invite me to the annual NSP fall gathering happening a few days later. I didn't even know how he knew of my arrival so quickly, as I was in a different department. I still to this day remember how this kind gesture made me feel so welcome. Al was a great scientist, colleague, role model, and a wise mentor when I was NSP director. His impact on the field and on the Illinois neuroscience community will long be remembered.

Rhanor, please let us know if charities have been designated by the family so we can contribute to honor his memory.

Gene

Reply to spregent@illinois.edu at 10:11 am
spregent@illinois.edu Sep 3, 2021 10:10 am

Rhanor,

I am very saddened that Al has passed.  When I was a post-doc here, he was a young faculty member starting up his lab.  His wife remained in her job temporarily in St. Louis (before they had children).  A group that included Al and single postdocs and graduate students would have dinner together before going back to work in the evening.  He was a good guy. 

Janice

Reply to spregent@illinois.edu at 10:10 am