William Stanley, American scientist & biologist, died at 58

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William (Bill) T. Stanley, born in 1957 and passed away October 6, 2015.

William was an American mammalogist who was a manager of the collections at one of the world’s largest natural history museums and a student of the mammals of eastern Africa.

He was an evolutionary biologist and mammalogist, and at the time of his death was the Director of the Field Museum of Natural History (FMNH) Collections Center and the Collection Manager of the “FMNH Collection of Mammals”.

William studied the biogeography, ecology, evolution, and systematics of shrews, bats and rodents that live on mountains within Tanzania and surrounding countries.

William was born in Beirut, Lebanon and was evacuated from the country at 2 years of age.

He moved to Kenya with his family when he was 11 and stayed there for 8 years where he worked at the National Museums of Kenya, and the Nairobi National Park Animal Orphanage.

William and his family spent much of this time in the natural habitats of the country.

After graduating from High School Stanley lived in Brunei, worked on Kibbutz Be’eri in Israel, and refurbished a century old farmhouse in central Virginia.

William moved to Humboldt County, California in 1979 where he worked for the California Fish and Game Department surveying spawning salmonid fishes.

In 1986, William began working at the Humboldt State University Vertebrate Museum, where he dissected and cleaned dead whale specimens that washed up on the beaches of Northern California.

He moved to Chicago in 1989 to become Collection Manager, Mammals at the Field Museum of Natural History.

William Stanley died of a heart attack, while on a collecting expedition in Ethiopia on October 6, 2015.