Cryonics Institute Founder Robert Ettinger
Ben Best was elected President of the Cryonics Institute in September, 2003, and stepped-down as President in October, 2012.
Ben discovered cryonics many years ago, when he bought Robert Ettinger's PROSPECT OF IMMORTALITY in a health-food store in Vancouver, Canada. He has been deeply involved in cryonics since the late 1980s, and was one of the founders of the Cryonics Society of Canada (CSC), was President for most of the 1990s, and remains a Director of that organization.
Ben is also President of the Institute For Neural Cryobiology, the charitable organization that funded the Hippocampal Slice Cryopreservation Project (HSCP) which was executed by Dr. Yuri Pichugin. Ben was also formerly a President of the CryoCare Foundation.
In addition to his organizational activities since the late 1980s, Ben has attended virtually every significant cryonics conference. His travels have allowed him to meet cryonicists in Australia/New Zealand and Europe as well as throughout North America. For accounts of his travels see the travel section of his website.
In recent years Ben Best has lived and worked as a professional computer programmer in Toronto, Canada, specializing in database applications in the financial and banking industries.
Ben has written extensively on the subject of cryonics, life extension and many other topics. Many of his writings on these subjects can be found on his website at www.benbest.com
To read his writings on cryonics topics (many of which are technical in nature) see the cryonics section of his website.
Debbie Fleming is 46 and currently lives in Palm Bay Florida with her two hairy children; Morgan (dog) and Peaches (cat). She started working at a local semiconductor company 20 years ago in an entry level position and has worked her way to her current position as an Engineering Tech. Her most recent accomplishment was obtaining her bachelor's degree in Organizational Management. Her father, John Bull, has been involved in Cryonics since the very first days back in the 60s and is currently the editor of Long Life magazine. Debbie also writes "Die Healthy"; a column that is published in Long Life. She very much enjoys researching the topics for the column and receiving feedback Long Life readers. Growing up, Cryonics was a household word as were names like Curtis Henderson, Saul Kent and Robert Ettinger. She began her interest in Cryonics at an early age, but only signed her contract with CI a few years ago. You will often see her at the CI September meetings (unless there is a hurricane looming around Florida) since she has been attending those meetings for about 15 years. It was during one of those initial meetings when she suggested that CI have a web presence and even helped design and publish the first webpage. She began attending the meetings to support her father and to make sure she got to know everyone involved since it's very important to her that her father gets the best possible freezing and care. This is her driving force for wanting to be on the Board of Directors. She wants CI to succeed...to survive...and she wants to see her dad again in the future!
As a CI Director she brings her leadership experience, family values, dedication and a fresh perspective.
Debbie can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Constance M. Ettinger, J.D. (Doctor of Jurisprudence), is a native of Michigan, and a resident of that state. She currently resides in Franklin, Michigan with her husband, David Ettinger, who is himself an attorney with a large Detroit law firm and the son of Robert Ettinger.
Connie and David met at the University of Michigan as law students, and Connie is a long-time legal professional as well, having received both her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Michigan. She has been a licensed attorney for 19 years, previously specializing in personnel and employment law.
An especially active member of the Cryonics Institute for several years, Connie assisted physically in a suspension in 1987, has often hosted meetings, and is currently serving as Contract Officer. (When members join or suspensions are performed, the Contract Officer signs on behalf of CI, verifies that the forms are properly executed, and also helps out members with individual problems or special circumstances.)
Connie is now acting Vice President of the Franklin Community Association. Her main hobby (and delight) is comedy, and she occasionally performs stand-up routines in various clubs throughout the Detroit area.
She says of herself, "Raised in the wilds of northern Michigan, Connie is adept at hunting and killing her own food. Such skills made it natural for her to become a disreputable attorney. Her favorite activities include thinking up new uses for the word 'irregardless'" .
She can be contacted at email@example.com
Marta Sandberg was born in Sweden in 1955, in a town that straddled the Polar Circle. She immigrated to Australia as a teenager and went from the freezing north to a hot dessert mining town.
It was there she met her husband Helmer. They shared twenty-three years together until he died of a pituitary brain tumour. Although Marta had been interested in cryonics since she read an article about the Dora Kent case, it was Helmer's illness that rekindled her interest. After spending several years investigating cryonics — and then more years trying to convince her husband — they both signed their contract with CI.
Helmer is currently suspended at CI and one day she plans to join him. This gives her a very personal interest in securing the future of cryonics and safeguarding her and her husband's next life. She likes CI's "slow and steady" approach and believes in being ultra-cautious when dealing with human lives over an indefinite time span.
She is actively promotes cryonics whenever she has a chance and have frequently appeared on TV, newspapers and magazines in Australia and Sweden. Her and Helmer's story has been touted as the The Love Story of the Century and Australia is the only county where most of the magazine articles on cryonics have been published in women's magazines.
Part of her deep involvement in the Australian cryonic community has led to Marta becoming a director of Stasis Systems Australia (SSA), a nascent Australian cryonics organisation.
Marta has a wide-ranging fascination with science and studied mathematics for her first degree. Her second degree is more prosaic; a Bachelor in Business (Accountancy).
This has led to work all over the western half of Australia, including a variety of jobs in two mining towns, as a managerial accountant working for indigenous Aborigines in Fitzroy Crossing, and as Senior Finance Officer for the wheat-belt town of Brookton. She also went back to Sweden for a year after her husband's death where she compiled a Disability Access Guide for the county government. Currently she lives on her farm in Bridgetown. She is working from home as an accountant whilst trying to restore her farm to working condition after a catastrophic fire.
Her hobbies include volunteering for the local bush fire brigade and SES (State Emergency Services), running a bookgroup and being part of an international service organisation called Zonta. She fits in walking, swimming and scuba diving when she has a chance and stubbornly but unsuccessfully tries to cultivate snottygobbles (Google it).
Marta can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pat Heller is a Certified Public Accountant, though for the most part he deals in Rare Coins and Precious Metals. He is the owner and chief executive officer of Liberty Coin Service, of Lansing, Michigan. He became Treasurer of CI in 1980, and has also served as Vice President of CI. He took office as Vice President in late 1995, following Andrea Foote, and stepped down in 2001, though he continues as Director and Treasurer.
Twice each year Pat spends an entire day at the Cryonics Institute drawing-up financial statements and assisting with the preparation of tax statements and other CI reporting requirements. Pat's knowledge of accounting, taxes, and his extensive business experience have made him an extremely valuable asset as Director and Treasurer of CI. Pat's volunteer activities are exemplary of how CI is able to keep it's prices low.
Apart from his financial, business, and managerial activities, Pat also has a literary gift and has written and published both fiction and poetry.
Pat is happily married to his wife, Pam. They have two adopted children. The Hellers live in Lansing, Michigan. To learn more about CI's Treasurer, see Meet Pat Heller.
Pat can be contacted at email@example.com
Joseph Kowalsky was born and raised in the Detroit area in an Orthodox Jewish home. Both his parents are teachers, a fact he feels encouraged his own lifelong love of learning.
He recalls that he first became aware of cryonics when a seventh grade science teacher brought some cryonics material to class. Joe was hooked: for the next fifteen years Joe kept abreast of the movement, eventually becoming an Associate member of the Immortalist Society. He still remembers attending meetings at Dave and Connie Ettinger's house and speaking to Bob Ettinger, a man he looked up to as a legend.
Following several moves between Akiva Hebrew Day School and public school, Joe graduated and went to Wayne State University on a full merit scholarship. During this time he supported working part time in a Detroit pawnshop, and then became founder and President of a small long distance phone company. He spent one semester as a student at Columbia University, and graduated (magna cum laude) with a BA in economics. He then went back to the University of Michigan Law School, and graduated in 1991, subsequently moving to the Washington, D.C. area, where he became a member of the Maryland and Washington D.C. bar.
Joe spent the next year in Senator Carl Levin's office, working on Paul Tsongas' presidential campaign, and on the Clinton Presidential transition team. Afterwards he went to Australia and New Zealand, doing volunteer work.
Returning again to Michigan, he worked on the Senate Primary Campaign of former Congressman Bill Brodhead, and then on the Senate campaign of Senator Spencer Abraham. With the assistance and encouragement of Congressman Brodhead, he formed his own private practice in 1994 in the Detroit suburb of Lathrup Village, and did a good deal more pro bono work than he would recommend to anyone else. After a few years, he set up the non-profit corporation Tomorrow, Inc., to do pro-bono legal work.
In 1998 he married the lovely and talented Jennifer, and in 1999 he left the law field to become a Financial Advisor, following an interest that he had had since age 15.
While assisting CI in legal work related to a suspension back when Joe was a practicing attorney, he decided to finally "get his paper work in order," as Bob Ettinger said, joining CI, and being elected Director in short order. Joe was Vice President from 2001 to 2003.
S.R. Luyckx was born in Detroit, Michigan, the fifth of six children. Mr. Luyckx graduated from Michigan State in 1986 with a BA in Logistics and a Masters degree in Finance a few years later. His professional career includes Kraft Foods, Chrysler/DaimlerChrysler Financial and in 2009 became the President of a joint venture between ADP and Reynolds.
He first became interested in Cryonics when a neighbor friend who was an important influence in his life introduced the topic. He has been one of the longest serving board members dating back almost 20 years and has attended every annual meeting since 1988.
Mr. Luyckx also maintains his license as a registered representative and continues to dabble in financial planning. This continues to be his hobby though he has often considered turning full time professional, and has been generous with his insights and experience as a member of CI's investment committee and "inside auditor" of CI's financial/accounting practices.
He continues to reside in Michigan with his wife and three children. Over the last 15 years he has become an avid runner and completed 17 marathons including 3 in Boston.
He can be contacted at:
Paul Hagen is a native of Michigan who has been living in Waupaca, Wisconsin for the past twenty years. He graduated from Northern Michigan University with a Bachelors in Finance in 1986. For several years he worked in the banking industry doing customer service and lending. His most recent position in banking was as a Personal Banker at a regional Wisconsin institution, Associated Bank. Currently Paul works for the State of Wisconsin as a Financial Specialist assisting Veterans with financial counseling, Medicaid claims, and funeral trusts. Paul is a licensed life insurance agent in Wisconsin. This gives him a wide range of knowledge of multiple financial instruments. However, he no longer sells any products. Paul continues to be a avid private investor extensively studying the craft of protecting and growing assets.
In 1996 Paul was elected to his local city council. He is Chairmen of Waupaca's Board of Public Works also having served on the Finance, Judiciary, and Personnel committees. In 2008 he was elected to two terms as a supervisor on his County Board.
Paul Grew up in Menominee Michigan. He spent countless hours working and contributing to his father's business Cory Laboratories. Even though he has little formal scientific training, Paul learned much from this experience. Paul's Dad Jerry Hagen was a Professional Chemical Engineer and is Patient #81.
With his Dad at CI Paul has a very strong vested interest in the long term stability, growth, and safety of the Cryonics Institute.
Paul has served in numerous civic and community organizations including the Red Cross, Lions, Jaycees, Loyal Order of Moose, and the Knights of Columbus. He was appointed to serve on a regional tourism marketing board in 2008.
Paul has been married for twenty years and has two wonderful children.
"I have a strong desire see CI prosper. I envision a vibrant and relevant organization bringing together many types of people toward the possibility of a successful future." .
(Robert) Alan Mole was born in Baltimore in 1943. He earned a BS in Civil Engineering at the University of Denver and an MS (Structural Stress Analysis) at the University of Colorado in 1971.
After a career as an aerospace stress analyst, an engineer who determines whether rockets and satellites will break, he is now semi-retired.
His background in Biology consists of a high school class, plus reading Stryer's Biochemistry and books by Darnel et al and Alberts et al, on molecular cellular biology, to learn of later advances. And reading Scientific American etc., so as to be conversant with current work.
His retirement is not idle, and he has wide interests. He has written about how to terraform Mars, one idea good enough to be quoted by Buzz Aldrin in Encounter with Tiber (page 539.) He has considered ways to get to the stars, and noted that it is prohibitively expensive and impractical to f eed people on a forty-year trip, so cold sleep will be a critical technology. This was the origin of his interest in cryonics.
Another interest is linguistics, and he wrote translator program for notebook computers, to allow you to converse with people if you go, say, to Hungary but don't speak Hungarian. Ambiguous words destroy understanding if they are translated wrong, so the program asks you for the meaning every time you use one. ("Charge" as in which meaning? 1. Charge my card. 2. Charge the battery 3. Charge him with murder.) You know what you mean so you type in the correct number and the translation comes out right. This means you have to be there to answer such questions, so it can't translate Web pages letters where the authors are not present. The program works well, but unfortunately people want to translate Web pages and don't want to converse, so it is not a financial success.
Alan Mole is also president of a small society for the reform of English spelling. (Our spelling is a corrupt bane that doubles our illiteracy rate and requires us to spend years learning to read and write, while others spend just two weeks.) The American Literacy Council has about twenty active members, though most of them are very old, and a fair sized endowment. As president for two years he has thought a lot on how to get the most out of this small organization, and how to revive this once-popular cause. This is good preparation for working with Cryonics Institute, another small organization with similar problems in promoting a cause that is not well known.
Alan can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
John K. Strickland, Jr. was born in New York City during the Second World War. He lived for 30 years in western New York state where he received a B.A. in Anthropology with a minor in Biology from S.U.N.Y. at Buffalo in 1967. He moved to a spot just outside Austin, Texas in 1976, and earned a second B.A. in Computer Science from St. Edwards University in Austin in 1986. He also earned graduate credits in both Anthropology and Biology. He has been a professional programmer/analyst since 1980, and has been employed by the State of Texas in Austin since July, 1989.
John has been an active member of space and science related organizations from 1961 (when he joined the American Rocket Society as a student member) to the present. He created the Robert A. Heinlein Memorial Award for the National Space Society (NSS) in 1988, (shortly after that author's death), and has managed the award from then to the present. His work with pro-space organizations brought him into contact in 1976 with Keith Henson, a well-known supporter of Cryonics and space settlement, and later K. Eric Drexler, another space activist who later made promoting nano-technology his life's work. Drexler early pointed out the possibility of future nano-assisted medical repairs which validated the basic concept of cryonics. John has been a supporter of Drexler's Foresight Institute from the beginning, and notes that the pro-space, pro-technology and pro-life extension groups all have a compatible and "positivist" philosophy. He has a full contract with C.I. His position is one of pragmatism in the service of idealism. In Theodore Roosevelt's words, this means "keeping your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground".
Since 1976, he has produced articles and op-eds for "The Humanist", "L5 News", "Ad Astra", "Space News", "Solar Power" and for other local and regional publications. His articles have focused primarily on national space policy, access to space, and space solar power. His creation of a slide show and talk in 1990 which explains and promotes Space Solar Power to non-technical audiences led to the publication of his first technical SSP article in 1995, and a second in 1996. He served as the director for science and space programming (about 50 events) at the 1997 LoneStarCon World Science Fiction Convention. He contributed a comprehensive chapter on energy systems in the book, ""Solar Power Satellites — a Space Energy System for Earth", edited by Dr. Peter Glaser et al., and published by Wiley-Praxis in 1998. He since has contributed several additional technical papers and presentations to the Mars Society 1999 Convention, the Wireless Power Transmission Conference of 2001, and the World Space Congress in 2002. He is a director of the Sunsat Energy Council and a candidate for an NSS director's seat. He has also been a moderate Delegate to the Texas State Republican Convention in 2000, 2002, AND 2004
John's involvement with the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims Of the Paranormal (CSICOP) a national group working for better science coverage and less pseudo-science in the mass media, has given him a unique debunker's perspective in dealing with energy vs. environment and other controversial issues. In 1981 he was one of 3 founders of the Protect Lake Travis Association of Austin, Texas, and still serves on its board of directors. As well, John is a Director of the National Space Society. He has been a member of the National Speleological Society since 1964 and a member of the Heart of Texas Orchid Society since 1976. He also enjoys reading History, Science Fiction and Science.
John can be reached at email@example.com
Dennis Kowalski is a Fire Fighter and a Nationally Registered EMT-Paramedic (NREMT-P) for the city of Milwaukee. He is also certified in advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), advanced pediatric life support (PALS), and as a CPR Instructor for the American Heart Association. As a Fire Fighter and Paramedic Dennis has had a lot of experience dealing with life and death. His training and skills have given him numerous opportunities to be a part of saving lives while helping others in great distress. In addition to his day job, he also teaches emergency medicine at the Milwaukee Fire Academy and the Milwaukee County Emergency Medical Center. He also works special events as a paramedic with the Bradley Center Sports Arena. He has been a National Registry examiner at the local technical colleges where he helped to certify many new Emergency Medical Technicians & Paramedics. As for problem solving under pressure, he has managed and set up emergency triage at mass casualty incidents to include the 2006 Falk gas explosion. He feels that his knowledge & experience in emergency medical services will make him a vital asset to CI's board of directors and he is eager to share what he has learned as a bridge between conventional emergency medicine and cryonics.
Dennis was raised in a small suburb outside of Milwaukee. In 1986 always a competitor, he proudly took home the golden gloves title in boxing. In 1987, After high school, he served in the US Marine Corps on a special assignment to Alpha company 3rd Reconnaissance. (a intelligence gathering unit hand picked for covert military operations.) There he held a secret clearance in communications. In 1991, he went to the University o f Waukesha to study philosophy and astronomy. Science has always been and continues to be a great love of his. From 1991 to 2003 he worked with the US postal service where he supervised operations. There he received training in budgeting, finance, marketing and was awarded several citations for revenue generating suggestions and proposals.
Dennis has volunteered for many charitable causes to include USMC toys for tots, Disabled American Veterans, and currently Project Staying Alive an urban initiative to teach children the alternatives to violence. He also works with the FOCUS & Survive programs designed to educate the community about fire safety and prevention. He has served on committees for Equal Employment Opportunity, Quality Control, MPO Sportsman club, Wisconsin Mycological Society and as a political action volunteer. He also is a member of the Cato Institute a public policy research organization dedicated to the principles of individual liberty. He is happily married to his wife Maria. They have 3 young boys, a dog and a cat. He also takes care of his disabled parents who he aspires to recruit to cryonics some day.
Dennis's goals are to see positive growth and stability in CI membership. He'd like to see local support groups formed to promote comradeship, marketing and emergency response. He would also like to continue to provide solutions into the various challenges and problems facing cryonics today and into the future. Advocating for Cryonics and Nanomedicine are essential to his philosophy. As someone dedicated to helping others, he sees advancements in these technologies as the logical conclusion to the quest for prosperity and longevity.
CI Director Andrew Zawacki is also an employee of the Cryonics Institute. Some of his responsibilities as a CI employee are processing membership sign-ups, preparing documents for members, membership database entries, facility & patient maintenance, preparing cryostats for service and patient suspensions.
Andrew Zawacki has been working for the Cryonics Institute since 1985. The largest cryostat was built by Andy with the help of his brother-in-law. It incorporates features much superior to our original models, and holds fourteen whole-body patients.
When speaking of his commitment to CI, Andy says "I am both a funded suspension member and an employee of CI which gives me incentive to want to help CI to prosper from both a personal and professional point. I have already served one term on the CI board and I am deeply involved with the day to day operations and member relations at CI. My daily involvement and contact with our membership puts me in a unique position to spot things that others may not, which I believe adds value to CI's board of directors."
(Founder, and for nearly 30 years the President of the Cryonics Institute, Robert Ettinger is widely regarded as the person who launched the cryonics movement with his book The Prospect Of Immortality.)
It's long been known that there's a connection between mathematics and music; so there's no surprise that a future mathematician and physicist like Robert Ettinger should have had a musical background. The grandnephew of a conductor of the St. Petersburg opera, and a nephew (by marriage) of the great jazz man Pee Wee Russell, Robert Chester Wilson Ettinger was born on December 4, 1918 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
As a youngster, he was a fan of what was then called 'scientifiction'. A story in one of these early science fiction magazines from the early 30's, 'The Jameson Satellite' by Neil R. Jones, involved an eccentric millionaire who sent his body into orbit after death, frozen in the cold and vacuum of space, only to be revived millions of years later by alien mechanical men who placed him in an immortal robot body like themselves, free to travel the stars.
Jones' story is often cited as the seed that first got Robert Ettinger thinking about the idea that was to become his life's work — and, perhaps, re-shape human history.
Mortality was a more prominent theme than immortality in those days. As World War Two began, Robert Ettinger became a second lieutenant infantryman in the United States Army, 1st Division, H Company, 18th Infantry Regiment, and fought in Europe. Severely wounded in battle in Germany, he received the Purple Heart and spent several years after the war recovering in an Army hospital in Battle Creek, Michigan.
Ettinger used the time not only to recuperate, but also to read and think. He was particularly struck by work by the famous French biologist Dr. Jean Rostand. Rostand had frozen frog sperm to the point where all biological activity and decay had ceased -- and successfully revived it several days later. He even speculated that perhaps someday the aged and infirm might be similarly treated and revived.
And in the course of that and other reading at Battle Creek, Robert Ettinger began to write — a short story published in March 1948 in Startling Stories called "The Penultimate Trump" in which a man is frozen and revived centuries in the future.
Ettinger's interest in science fiction was not as strong as his interest in science fact, however. Prior to enlisting, Ettinger had spent one semester at the University of Michigan. Upon leaving his hospital bed, he enrolled at Wayne State University in Detroit, where he earned a BA and MA in physics, and then a second MA in mathematics.
He became an instructor at Wayne State, teaching physics and mathematics, and then turned down the offer of an Assistant Professorship at Wayne to teach at Highland Park Community College in Michigan. It was an intellectually stimulating and pleasant life, made happier by the birth of his son David in 1951 and his daughter Shelley in 1954.
Nonetheless he continued to critically examine and explore the ideas in his earlier story, and around 1960 he began pulling together all the ideas he'd been thinking about for the last several years about a new area of science — which would come to be called 'cryonics'.
In 1962 he sat down and put his ideas into the form of a book, called The Prospect Of Immortality, which he published privately and sent to friends and scientists. It attracted so much attention that Doubleday publishers sent a copy to Isaac Asimov to see if the ideas had any validity. Asimov gave it a clean scientific bill of health, and Doubleday published it in 1964.
At which point, as science author Ed Regis wrote, "The Prospect Of Immortality ultimately went through nine languages and four editions and became the bible of the cryonics movement".
Robert Ettinger became a media celebrity, discussed in The New York Times, Time, Newsweek, Paris Match, Der S peigel, Christian Century, dozens of other periodicals. He appeared on television with David Frost, Johnny Carson, Steve Allen, and others, and spoke on radio shows coast to coast.
Ettinger's work was read by, and galvanized, the leaders of what soon came to be the cryonics movement. Saul Kent of 21st Century Medicine (to take only one example) recalls reading Ettinger's book in June of 1964, and was inspired to help found (with the help of Curtis Henderson and others) the Cryonics Society of New York a year later, and to freeze CSNY's first patient a few years after that.
Cryonics had begun as Robert Ettinger's idea. It had become a reality.
The movement progressed, and the scientific evidence mounted, hand in hand. In January 1967 retired psychology professor named Dr James Bedford became the first human being to be placed in cryonic suspension, and later that year Robert Ettinger and his friends and admirers and colleagues came together to form the Cryonics Society of Michigan for purposes of research and education and to discuss Ettinger's ideas on saving and extending human life.
CSM eventually changed its name to the Cryonics Association, and finally became the Immortalist Society (IS), taking it's name after Robert Ettinger's book.
But IS members, dissatisfied with the policies and procedures of the existing cryonics service organizations, came together in 1976 to form a new and separate nonprofit corporation, the Cryonics Institute (CI), in order to provide the best possible cryonics services to its members. Robert Ettinger was elected President of both organizations, posts he occupied till 2003.
During the turbulent period of the late sixties and early seventies, however, Robert Ettinger continued to stretch the intellectual parameters of his time, producing his second book, a href="./book2.html" target="_blank">Man Into Superman, one of the seminal texts in what some people are now calling the transhumanist movement.
Its thesis was that advancing scientific and technological change would eventually produce essential and radical changes in humanity and society itself, as cloning and gene therapy have confirmed, and explored its implications.
All-too-human events continued to take place Robert Ettinger's life, however. In 1977 His mother, Rhea Ettinger, was cryopreserved as a patient at the CI facilities, and in 1987, his first wife Elaine, also became a patient.
The 1980's were marked by tremendously encouraging progress in cryonics, most notably the development of nanotechnology. In 1984, Dr K. Eric Drexler wrote the science classic Engines Of Creation, outlining a technological scenario for reviving patients currently in cryonics suspension by using nanoscale assembler devices, an approach that soon began winning adherents among wide numbers of the mainstream scientific community.
And Dr. Drexler, who has called The Prospect Of Immortality one the most influential books of the century, was not modest in giving credit where credit is due. He wrote, "Ettinger had the idea that something like assemblers would be possible the basic idea of molecular repair was there, and it was central to the cryonics idea."
Research progressed on other fronts as well. Experiments with even large adult mammals demonstrated that living creatures could be cooled to the point of exhibiting no signs of life for increasingly extended periods of time, yet revived.
By the late Eighties, techniques such as freezing and reviving human embryos had become commonplace.
And by the Nineties, the Internet had given scientists working on the problem of revival, and cryonics organizations and activists eager to get the word out, a world-spanning medium for information exchange.
In 1988, Ettinger married Mae Junod, and they moved from Michigan to Scottsdale, Arizona, for the warmer climate, until Mae became ill and was cryopreserved early in 2001.
Robert Ettinger then returned to Michigan and the Cryonics Institute, where he served further as President until September 2003. He retired as CI Vice-President in December 2005, and retired as a CI Director in September 2006. As always, however, is advice is sought and respected. His and CI's continuing goal being, to improve cryopreservation procedures in line with CI's intention of offering members the benefits of all types of procedures as they become available, at the lowest cost possible for each.
Bob remains a frequent contributor to LONG LIFE magazine (formally known as The Immortalist), and to various discussion groups. For relaxation he likes swimming and going on walks with his dog Mugsy. And, like his forebears, he still likes a good melody, from Tchaikovsky to barbershop quartets.
Mostly, he concentrates on helping CI, and on continuing to learn and to explore the world intellectually. His conclusions so far, the classic books, The Prospect Of Immortality and Man Into Superman, may be downloaded complete and free of charge from our website. His most recent book, entitled YOUNIVERSE, can be obtained by special order from the Immortalist Society
Robert Ettinger was cryopreserved at the Cryonics Institute in July 2011 at the age of 92. See The Cryonics Institute's 106th Patient — Robert Ettinger for details.