J. Desmond Clark
I had the privilege and pleasure
of working with Desmond late in his career, up to the time he passed
away. I often secretly feared that his frail physical condition
would interfere with his mental acuity as we worked on the volume
with Martin Williams and Andy Smith.
However, my doubts would vanish over lunch or a discussion of results,
as Desmond would deliver himself of a deeply informed, typically
penetrating, and articulate opinion that drew on his many years
of study of the African archaeological record. I am glad that he
was able to think and write so clearly and actively, almost to the
very end. And I am even more glad that I was able to be once again
his student and colleague over that span.
Desmond, may your spirit walk forever
in the dry lands, where handaxes and choppers glisten in abundance
in the sun. May your camp sit cool under tall trees. May you continue
your sundowners and debates with comrades who, like you, have passed
away from us.
You live on in our hearts, not just as a memory but as a constant
companion and mentor in our daily work.
Diane Gifford-Gonzalez, UCSC