Stargazing

Stephen Hawking falls ill

Stephen Hawking

, one of the world’s most renowned scientists, has been hospitalized.

The 67-year old Hawking has ALS, a motor neuron disease that is also known as Lou Gerhig’s Disease.

Hawking may be the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge (a position once held by

Isaac Newton
A Brief History of Time

, and know all about black holes and universes and such, but I prefer to think of him as Stephen Hawking: voice actor.

Hawking is of course unable to speak on his own: He uses a synthesizer with an American accent (he’s a Brit).

Hawking is also a part of pop culture. He’s appeared as himself on both the animated TV shows “Futurama” and “The Simpsons.” The guy’s a genius, and he’s got a sense of humor too!

He also appeared as himself on an episode of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” He was part of a holodeck-created poker game with Data,

Albert Einstein Hawking won the hand.

Einstein thought he was bluffing.

In all seriousness, though, I hope Hawking can pull through his latest illness. He’s an inspiration to people (and people with disabilities) everywhere.

| Eric Winkler, ewinkler@kcstar.com

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