Word has been received that Kensal Edward van Holde of Corvallis, Oregon, a biophysicist whose affiliation with Marine Biological Laboratory continued for his entire professional life, died at home November 9 at the age of 91.
He was born in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and attended the University of Wisconsin, where he received his bachelor of science degree in 1949 and his PhD in 1952. He met Barbara Watson at the university and they married on April 11, 1950.
A longtime MBL summer scientist, he taught in the physiology course there and later directed this course. During summers he and his wife and their four children lived in their house on Orchard Street and were active in the Woods Hole community. His wife died in 2010.
Dr. van Holde held positions at University of Wisconsin-Madison and University of Illinois before moving to Oregon State University in 1967, where he remained until this year. At OSU, he was a full professor from 1967 to 1993 and a distinguished professor emeritus from 1993 until the time of his death.
His primary academic contributions were in physical biochemistry. A renowned scholar and teacher, he published or contributed to more than 180 peer-reviewed articles while supporting the career development of many highly successful graduate students and post-doctoral students; he also found enjoyment in teaching undergraduate biochemistry. He published several widely used textbooks in the field, including “Biochemistry” (4th edition), with Dr. Chris Mathews, also of Oregon State.
Dr. van Holde was inducted into both the National Academy of Sciences (1989) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1996).
He leaves his second wife, Myrna Shepper; three children, Mary Todd, Steve van Holde and David van Holde; eight grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and extended family.
In addition to his first wife, he was preceded in death by his daughter Patty van Holde in 1985.
A memorial service celebrating his life is planned for late winter.