Arthur C. Clarke DeadBy T'Bonz
March 19, 2008 - 11:53 PM
Arthur C. Clarke, author of books such as Childhood's End, The Nine Billion Names of God and 2001:A Space Odyssey, passed away today at his adopted home of Sri Lanka.
As reported by the International Herald Tribune, the English-born author died of respiratory complications and heart failure.
Born in 1917 in Minehead, England, he began writing science fiction in 1937. in 1945, he sold the short story Rescue Party to a magazine now called Astounding Science Fiction. More stories followed and he became a freelance writer, penning or collaborating on almost one hundred books.
Clarke was in the Royal Air Force in the Second World War, where he worked with a team of engineers who had developed the first radar-controlled system for landing airplanes in bad weather. He was the first to propose the idea of communication satellites, although he neglected to patent the idea, to his later regret.
Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry credited Clarke's writings with encouraging him to keep on with his Star Trek project in the face of television executive indifference.
A Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode honored Clarke by an in-joke for the Far Beyond the Stars episode. The magazine for which the 1950s writers worked, Incredible Tales, had a story listed in it titled "1001: First Odyssey".
Clarke left no immediate survivors. He married in 1953, but the couple separated within months, finally divorcing in 1964. They had no children.