Deceased January 9, 2023

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in memory

Jim Andrews died on Jan. 9, 2023, from complications of Parkinson’s disease. Jim was an academic star who spent most of his career as a scientist exploring the ocean depths. He earned his doctorate in geophysics and oceanography at the University of Miami in 1967. For his exceptional research in geological oceanography, he was awarded the Humboldt Prize and elected a fellow of the Geological Society of America.

From 1967 to 1981, Jim was on the faculty of the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa and the Hawai‘i Institute of Geophysics; this included a four-year term as department chair. From 1981 to 2006, he held various senior positions in the Office of Naval Research and related Department of Defense organizations.

Jim was beloved by his Amherst classmates, especially his fraternity brothers at Phi Delt. Jim noted in his 50th-reunion yearbook statement that “as a junior, against all reason and three years short of any legal status, I became the Phi Delt social chairman. This meant that, despite looking about 14, I was implicitly trustworthy and of age in the eyes of the local liquor stores.” Notwithstanding his youthful demeanor, Jim was generally the adult in the room.

For his towering presence, Jim was affectionately known in the class of ’63 as the “whale.” Exactly how a “whale” fit into a racing shell has never been fully explained, but Jim was a powerhouse oarsman on the Amherst varsity crew. 

Jim Andrews’ life reflected the high values and meaningful achievement our alma mater seeks for all of us: he truly lived a “life of consequence.” Jim is survived by his wife of 43 years, Nona, and son Jay. 

Alan S. Bernstein ’63