I was saddened to hear today that Dr. Turhan Taner passed away over the weekend. He lived here in Houston and had been suffering from a long illness. My wife Dolores was a great friend of his and, through her, I had the chance visit him several times. He did first class work in many aspects of applied geophysics, most recently in seismic attributes. His 1960s papers on travel time curves in layered media are still the foundation for understanding this key subject.
As you can see from the SEG Honors and Awards list, Tury won SEG Honory Membership (1978), Best Paper Presentation at the Annual Meeting (1978), and the prestigious Maurice Ewing Medal (1993). In addition to being an excellent scientist, he was a kind and generous man. Many benefited from association with him, and he will be missed by all. A good biography of Tury can be found here.
***** Text of Tury's Obituary *******
Dr. M. Turhan “Tury” Taner passed away Saturday, February 6, 2010, in Houston, Texas at the age of 82. Dr. Taner will be laid to rest next to his parents in Istanbul, Turkey. A memorial service will be held after his family returns from Turkey at Emerson Unitarian Church, 1900 Bering Dr. on Sunday, March 21st at 3:00 pm.
Turhan was born in Akhisar, Turkey to Izzet and Kadriye Taner. He received a Diplome Engineer in 1950 from the Technical University of Istanbul and came to the United States in 1953 to the University of Minnesota for a postgraduate program in engineering. He co‐founded Scientific Computers in 1959, and in 1964 co‐founded Seiscom Delta, a geophysical service company, where he served as chairman, director of research, and later, senior VP for technology. In 1980 he started Seismic Research Corporation (SRC), and in 1998 SRC merged with Petrosoft and Discovery Bay to create Rock Solid Images. Widely known within the geophysical community, Tury was the recipient of numerous accolades including the SEG’s highest award, the Maurice Ewing Medal in 1993 and The EAGE’s highest recognition, the Desiderius Erasmus Award for lifetime contribution in 2004. Tury was a pioneer, teacher, scholar, great practitioner and a household name in geophysics. During his career he authored or co‐authored several groundbreaking papers on geophysical methods and contributed to the development of many technologies still in use today. In addition to his passion for creating and developing geophysical algorithms such as semblance and multitudes of other seismic attributes, he loved music, food and wine, traveling, art, and soccer, but most of all, he loved his friends and family.
Tury is survived by his loving family, including his son Jeffrey Taner and wife Andrea; daughter Jane Harris and her husband Christopher; son John Taner and his wife Julie; sister Turcan Sozeri; niece Selen Ozel and her husband Haluk; grandchildren Adam Harris, Emily Taner, Lilly Taner, Daniel Taner, Jack Taner; great‐niece Beren Ozel, and great‐nephew Devin Ozel. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations in honor of Dr. M. Turhan Taner be made to the National Parkinson Foundation, 1501 NW 9th Avenue, Bob Hope Road, Miami Florida 33136‐1494.