The legendary British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, the world’s greatest minds of science died today at his home in Cambridge. He was 76.
Hawking was as famous for his insights on black holes, the existence of God and quantum gravity as he was for his unique way of speaking while living his life in a wheelchair.
He was also an author of numerous books including the landmark “A Brief History of Time,” which has sold more than 10 million copies.
The physicist and cosmologist was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a form of motor neurone disease in 1963, when he was a 22-year-old student at Cambridge University and doctors initially only gave him a few years to live.
The illness left him in a wheelchair and largely unable to speak except through a voice synthesiser.[ecp code=”4″]
Hawking’s children, Lucy, Robert and Tim said in a statement: “We are deeply saddened that our beloved father passed away today.”
“He was a great scientist and an extraordinary man whose work and legacy will live on for many years.”
They praised his “courage and persistence” and said his “brilliance and humour” inspired people across the world.
“He once said, ‘It would not be much of a universe if it wasn’t home to the people you love.’ We will miss him forever.”
The scientist gained popularity outside the academic world and appeared in several TV shows including The Simpsons, Red Dwarf and The Big Bang Theory.