It's a difficult loss for the students and faculty at St. Edward's University. Allan William Hook died this week. Known to most everyone simply as "Hook", he was a fixture on campus for 25 years, teaching the subject he loved -- biology.
"He was irreverent and a lot of fun,” said fellow St. Edward’s professor William Quinn. “He was a great scientist. A great, great, inspirational teacher."
"He was always there ready with his quick wit and a good joke," said John Abbott, of the university’s Wild Basin Creative Research Center.
Mike Satcher was a pre-med student when he took Hook's class on a whim.
"A lot of students will tell you he's terrifying. He's an absolutely terrifying teacher because he has such high standards," Satcher said. "But then he goes from this strong intensity of teaching to the next minute, he's acting out for the classroom rectal jet propulsion in dragonfly larvae."
He was a teacher that changed lives.
"That class was the reason I fell in love with field biology, with the science itself," Satcher said. "It changed the course of my life, changed my future."
Hook was also a world-renowned scientist, credited with the discovery of three different species of insects
"Those were great honors,” Quinn said. “But he discovered a lot of things. There's a lot of unknowns sitting in his office."
Hook was also instrumental in St. Edward's role in the Wild Basin Wilderness Preserve, more than 200 acres of protected wildland in west Austin.
"It was really his idea and passion that I think brought Wild Basin to St. Edward's University," Abbott said.
He leaves behind many inspired students, and many, many admiring friends.
"He's not there, but he makes me smile,” Quinn said. “Even today, right now, he's making me smile."
A memorial for Hook is planned for Sunday afternoon on the St. Edward's campus. The memorial will be at St. Ed's Chapel at 5 p.m. followed by what friends are calling a "Hookabration" in the main building at 5:30 p.m.