Author and professor Martin Austin Fido, 79, of North Falmouth died April 2, following a fall at his home.

Born in the United Kingdom, in the small village of Heamoor, Cornwall, to Austin and Enid Fido, his adventurous spirit saw him travel the world, ending his days in Falmouth.

After receiving a degree in English literature from Oxford University’s Lincoln College, he embarked on an academic career that included jobs at the Universities of Leeds, Michigan State and the West Indies (Barbados).

In the 1980s, he returned to the UK and devoted his attention to writing and broadcasting, primarily on the subject of true crime. The 1987 publication of his "The Crimes, Detection and Death of Jack the Ripper" brought him continuing recognition as an expert on the serial killer. His work on the Ripper also provided enduring personal and professional friendships with fellow scholars and enthusiasts in the field. In later years, he returned to his métier, teaching writing at Boston University. With a bow tie and booming voice, he lived up to expectations of the eccentric English professor until his death.

He supported a variety of charities, mostly focused on nature and wildlife conservation, the alleviation of poverty, and enabling access to education. He was also active in the West Falmouth Quaker Meeting, upon which he focused much of his energy in recent years.

He leaves his brother, Hugh Fido of Canterbury, UK; two daughters, Becki Fido and Abi Fido of Yorkshire, UK, from his first marriage to Judith Fido, and a son, Austin Fido of Barbados, from his second marriage to Elaine Fido. He also leaves four grandsons.

He was predeceased by his third wife, Karen L. (Sandel) Fido, who died in 2013.

There was a memorial service at West Falmouth Friends Meeting House on Saturday, April 13, followed by a time of fellowship at his home.

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