Completely unexpectedly and after a short illness, Dr Steven Lawrie died on 21st February 2017.
Staff and students are bereft, and he leaves a large hole in the fabric of Aberdeen University.
Having been an undergraduate, a postgraduate, and a lecturer in Aberdeen, in latter years Dr Lawrie very much became the heart and soul of the German Department. He lived and loved German literature and culture more than most natives, and his command of the language was beyond compare.
He also knew university rules and regulations and was uncompromising when it came to doing the correct thing. Usually, he was right. At the same time, he was also very human and generous. Through his work in the student progress committee, many a student – college-wide - experienced this tough love. And some will only understand a little later that - in the end - his decisions probably led to the best possible outcome.
What remains? What remains is his particular brand of humour, his stories, the impression he left on his students, his quick way to flare up - and calm down after the next cigarette, never, ever taking (or handing out) anything personally: very German - that! A very formal politeness, which broke through ever so often – and his great love for the sun.