Greg Lasley passing

I just saw a post on facebook that Greg Lasley passed away yesterday. He was certainly one of the greatest inaturalist contributors. Such a loss!

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Ahhh Shit. I’ve been in touch with him over the past couple of years, and knew about his medical situation. I have been very concerned about him, but did not want to bother him with my thoughts about his condition (I’m an ex ICU nurse). I’ve never met him, but have known him since I began iNat. He seemed like a great human being. A birder gone bad, as he said. I had thought I might attend his funeral if he died, but our borders are still closed, so I cannot. This is tragic, but assume he is at peace now. What an uncalled for loss.
Edit - I had checked his page a couple of days ago, and saw that he had been active lately.

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Ahh, that is very unfortunate. Checking the fb posts, it sounds like he passed after complications from a double lung transplant.

Greg was huge in the bird and dragonfly world and also very active in both communities here on iNaturalist. He has over 400,000 IDs on his profile and almost 40,000 observations. (https://www.inaturalist.org/people/9706)

This probably has not happened often, but what is iNaturalist’s policy on profiles of users who pass? Is there a way to make a profile “in memory” or what have you like facebook does?

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greglasley will be missed for sure. here’s an iNat blog post that features a video interview with him: https://www.inaturalist.org/posts/17670-an-interview-with-greglasley.

see Deceased observers - and a deceased symbol on their icon - Feature Requests - iNaturalist Community Forum

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Dan - I saw that as well. He will be missed.

I first knew of him as a nature photographer and then met him on iNat. He identified a teneral Blue Skimmer that I posted within a short time of posting it and that was one of the key things that happened to get me involved in iNat.

He graciously helped me a number of times in learning to identify many different creatures over the few years I knew him. Whenever he was in my area he would contact me and we would spend the day or part of a day together exploring around the area I lived in and I always learned a lot from those days.

I know that he helped lots of people learn more natural history and his passing will greatly effect many people.

Scott

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He sure was a knowledgeable iNatter, he even helped me ID to species level this terrible photo (https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/21343859)! I send my condolences to his family and friends.

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I am so sorry to hear that. I didn’t know him, but he identified several observations for me (always kind and informative). I knew he was much respected by all on iNat. My condolences to the family. Would be wonderful if iNat remembered him in a special blog post or some other way. Just a suggestion.

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Greg was an all-around great guy and mentored me in odonate identification. He visited my home turf in NM a number of times and I got to go out and photo dragonflies with him. As I mentioned on his iNat interview page, he was the main motivator for me to get more involved in iNat. I enjoyed seeing his daily submissions on iNat, either from his home in Dripping Springs or from one of his many trips to exotic and not-so-exotic locales. He stopped posting to iNat last Sept., which was not a good sign. Although I met him in the real world only a couple of times, I’ll definitely miss our regular correspondence via email and on the pages of iNat. A truly sad day.

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His passing is a great loss! I will miss his ID help and help with any question I would throw at him. I was sure pulling for him to recover!

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What a huge loss. I didn’t know Greg well, but met him a couple of times and followed him on Facebook up until I closed my account. I had such high hopes that the transplant would put him back to some semblance of normal. He seemed to have had such a full life. He is an inspiration to all of the naturalists and nature photographers who knew him.

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I posted the following earlier today on the page with Greg’s video interview.

Greg lived a rich, full, adventurous life. Including 13 trips to Antarctica, trips to Central and S. America, as well as numerous other nature-filled destinations. He served his country as a load handler in the USAF, then joined the Austin Police Dept. in 1971. Even while working full-time for APD, he found time to indulge his passion for nature and photography. When he retired in 1997, he plunged full-time into the natural world. We both plunged into the world of digital photography beginning in 2000, and he accepted and excelled at that new challenge too.

Diagnosed with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis in Nov. 2019, after much thought and consideration, he and his wife Cheryl applied to the lung transplant program at University Hospital in San Antonio. Physicians there told them that his age of 70 would likely preclude him from becoming a transplant recipient, but after a barrage of testing from Jan. 2020 to last May, they put him on the list. Sep. 3 they got the call, and the next day, after a long day of surgery, he had new lungs.

His recovery looked promising in the first 2-3 weeks, then one setback after another reversed his recovery. Two months became three, then four; and Cheryl made the long drive to and from San Antonio at least five times a week. Recently, a palliative care physician became involved and helped get Greg relief from pain that bedeviled him day after day. As his condition worsened, he and Cheryl let the hospital know they wanted him to go home.

A medical team transported him to his and Cheryl’s home yesterday, and made him comfortable. He passed at 6:23 CST.

As Abraham Lincoln said, “And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.”

Greg W. Lasley packed one heck of a life into his years, leaving all that knew him richer for the experience.

Lightspeed, my friend.

Mike Murphy

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Oh what a loss!

I still recall, 2 decades ago when this stranger contacted me. I was working on my SW Odes Pocket Guide, and this stranger wrote and said, I’m well-known in the birder’s world for my photographs, but I’m an unknown in the Ode circles. I’d like to donate the use of my SW Ode photos for your guide so I can become known there!!

I actually only met Greg ONCE in person, at the Texas DSA meeting. But he looms BIG in my life. All his photos, his IDs help on Naturalista. This is a huge loss.

Rest in peace my dear friend.

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This is really sad to hear. I didn’t know him personally, but I know how much of a presence he was in the community.

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About ten years ago at the Dragonfly Society southeast regional meeting in New Hampshire, Greg and I waded out into some bog so he could photograph a Scarlet Bluet (Enallagma pictum). It wouldn’t perch on a lilypad close to shore, only well out in the pond of course. Footing underneath as we waded out was very spongy. At some point Greg starting sinking into the substrate and was holding his expensive camera in one hand while slowly sinking. I managed to get out to him on a submerged log and grab his camera so he could swim back. Such is the life of a naturalist. And I think he got a really good photo too!!

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I am very sad to hear of his passing. I only met him once at an iNat get together a couple of years ago but he was always so helpful with IDs for my students and always provided good guidance and really represented the best of what the iNaturalist community was about.

I am glad that I got to meet him and he will be sorely missed. Enjoy your trip to the stars, good sir. You have left us a piece of yourself and some awfully big shoes to fill.

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I am very sad to hear of this loss. I will miss receiving Greg’s identifications and will forever appreciate his large contribution of knowledge and great photos to iNaturalist and elsewhere.

Malcolm

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I never knew Greg personally but he was one of my go-to naturalists for identification of birds and his responses were always polite, helpful and open to learning. He really made sure people felt welcomed to the community. I noticed he hasn’t been online for some time and I was praying it wouldn’t come down to this. He will be missed. :cry:

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Hey folks, @kueda wrote a short blog post on the iNat Blog about Greg’s passing. If you want to share a memory of Greg there, that would be great.

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That is so sad.

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