Ben Bova, the science fact-and-fiction writer who has worked in TV, magazines, and over 100 books, has passed way. He was 88 years old. Bova was born in Philadelphia on November 8, 1932, and would marry three times, first in 1953 and then in 1974, and again in 2013. He had two children by that first marriage, and the second lasted from 1974 until 2009, when Barbara Berson Rose passed away. In 1972, Bova became editor of Analog Science Fact & Fiction, where won six Hugo Awards for Best Professional Editor. In 1985, he was awarded San Diego Comic-Con's Inkpot Award.
The news came via Bova's niece, who tweeted about it. The information carried over to Bova's official Facebook page, and his publisher, Tor, issued a statement as well.
"Scientist, Hugo Award winner, and prolific science fiction author and editor Ben Bova passed away on Sunday, November 29, 2020 at the age of 88," said Tor's statement in part. "The author of more than one hundred books, Bova also edited some of the genre's best-known publications and served as the president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America." They noted that before working on Analog, Bova had worked as a science writer for Avco Everett Research Laboratory, which built the heat shields for the Apollo 11 module.
According to his niece, Kathryn Brusco, Bova passed away due to complications from COVID-19 and a stroke.
"My Uncle Ben...by marriage...science fiction icon, author, adventure lover, story teller, futurist, and my son's namesake, Ben Bova, has passed away this morning from COVID-19 related pneumonia and a stroke," Brusco shared on Twitter. "Needless to say, he will be missed terribly by us and the the world."
His novels include As on a Darkling Plain, The Starcrossed, and Orion and the Conqueror. There are also a number of books published in more recent years named simply after planets and moons in our universe, known to his fans as the Grand Tour series, beginning with 1992's Mars, about the first human expedition to the red planet. According to Tor, Bova's latest installment, Uranus, was published in July, and was scheduled to be the first of a trilogy. The second installment, Neptune, is scheduled for release next year.
They quote the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction as saying, "the [Bova] he laces into sometimes overloaded storylines are arguments it is important, perhaps absolutely vital, to make."
Our thoughts go out to Bova's family, friends, and fans during this difficult time.