Barry Williams died this morning. We were friends for many decades and I am not sure of his age which was probably approaching 80. He was never a prominent mover and shaker although for some years through the ’80s to 2009 he was the public face of the Australian Skeptics, a network of groups ostensibly dedicated to critical thinking.
He was achieved the rank of flight sergeant in the Air Force and later worked in the US Consulate in Sydney doing trade shows until a large bequest to the Skeptics freed him to become the fulltime executive officer in 1995.
This is a fairly good interview. As noted in the interview he was a huge cricket fan with a great knowledge of the game. He wrote an essay on the myth of the “devil’s number” 87 (13 runs short of the century) which was reputed to be a dangerous number when many batsmen succumbed.
My wife painted his portrait.
I mentioned that the organized Skeptics were ostensibly dedicated to critical thinking. That was the case when Barry and I and some other good men and true were on the NSW committee but times have changed. Nowadays the Skeptics (and also the organized Rationalists and Humanists) are warming alarmists.