Since attending David Starr Jordan Junior High School in Palo Alto which had a marine biology emphasis based on the donation of Jordan’s ichthyology library to the school, I have had an abiding interest in ocean science.
I learned to SCUBA dive in 1962 at age 13. In high school, I pursued science fair projects involving detecting electrical impulses from fish in a free swimming environments. I was also part of the team that designed and installed a 1500 gallon splash-zone salt water aquarium in our high school biology building entrance in 1966/67. (You can just buy these now!)
I was educated as a Chemical Engineer at Texas A&M University and specialized in ocean sciences and microbiology. There I taught SCUBA to university marine sciences personnel to include black water and recovery diving. I was part of the group that enticed Jacques Cousteau to visit A&M. As a graduate student in desalination thermodynamics, I sub-specialized in hyperbaric physiology (and was a guinea pig). During this time I also acted as an engineering diver for a Hydrolab habitat project under the auspices of Sea Grant and the NSF. My career vector toward oceanography seemed set, and then my very low Draft Lottery Number came up. [This was not a lottery you wanted to win.]
In the military, I supervised recreational diving in Florida for a few years, but my duties and post-military careers moved me away from the ocean for nearly 40 years. Retirement to Vero Beach has returned me to it.
I in-processed yesterday with Harbor Branch, so now it appears I am back to the future as I saw it in 1970. As I said, yippee.