Ronald Barnell

Obituary of Ronald Barnell

Schenectady - Ronald Barnell, 75 years old, passed away at home on May 7, 2020 . Ron was born in New York City, the son of Fred and Bernice Barnell. A graduate from Mont Pleasant High School, he later completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the State University at Albany. He also studied science media at Syracuse University. He was passionate about photography, astronomy and classical music. Active in local astronomy organizations, he participated in a variety of activities. He studied under Curtis Hemenway at the Dudley Observatory working with micro meteors and worked tirelessly reviving the famous Pruyn Brashear telescope of the Dudley Observatory. More recently he was known for envisioning a new kind of observatory, the Helderberg Earth and Sky Observatory, that would bring the wonders of astronomy to the public both young and old. He laid the ground work for siting an educational observatory in the Helderberg Hilltowns away from the light pollution of urban centers and outfitted with instrumentation for radio and optical astronomy. He is survived by a brother, Robert Barnell. A funeral will be held for Ron at the convenience of the family. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Diabetes Society, 5 Pine West Plaza #505, Albany, NY 12205.
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