I knew Sam from our time together in grad school at Caltech, and then more briefly at Bell Labs. He was an exuberant character that you would never forget. Smart, insightful, real.
In the intervening years, our paths diverged. But when he joined NYU, where I am now, I thought, What a stroke of luck. Who would have thought we would be colleagues? It was exciting.
The NYU community is close-knit - we live and work as neighbors. Our kids are the same age and would play in the Key Park together. We could become good friends. The kind of friends you can be when you have known each other for a long time, even. We talked and laid out a collaboration. We would tackle some challenging problems together. The holidays were busy. Let’s get our families together in the New Year, he said.
Wednesday morning, as I walked my son to preschool, I thought, it's really time to send Sam that email. The holidays are over. We should all get together ...
Sam's loss is tremendous. I will never forget the sense of excitement that he brought to me and to everything he did. More than anything, I will miss what could have been.
Sam Roweis died unexpectedly on January 12, 2010.
He was a truly wonderful person; a beloved son, husband and father; and a treasured friend and colleague.
This is a place for all of us who were lucky enough to know Sam to share our memories and to help celebrate his life.
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