|Department of Mathematics
The University of Chicago
5734 University Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60637
August 12, 2000
I am writing on behalf of the Mathematics Department and particularly on behalf of the many friends of Tom Wolff among our faculty to express our deepest sorrow at the news of Tom's death.
We feel a tremendous sense of the loss of someone extremely special, both from a personal and mathematical point of view. Tom's work in so many different areas of analysis was at a level which clearly established him as one of the greatest analysts of our time. His work often pointed out new directions and points of view, as well as providing very deep and difficult theorems. So we have not only lost a top mathematician, but a true leader.
Tom was also a wonderful personality, and anyone who has been fortunate enough to meet him can never forget his generosity and humility combined with tremendous brilliance. His lectures on mathematics were wonderful illustrations of this, and I can remember so many times when Tom explained with marvelous simplicity a very complicated and incredibly clever argument of his as if it were extremely easy and obvious to everyone. This was just a reflection of how natural and clear mathematics was to him, and how modest he was.
It is certainly most difficult to come to terms with the shock of a loss so sudden and so great. Perhaps we can at least take some comfort in the unanimous admiration and celebration of Tom's work among members of the mathematical community and in the fact that his outstanding work will live on as a most fitting and impressive memorial to him in the coming years.
With our deepest sympathy,