Southern Maine Astronomers mourns the passing of its members. Through this page the Club acknowledges their membership, their friendship and the contributions they have made to all of us through our shared interest in astronomy.
Steven O. Innes – (4/22/55 – 10/16/11) – Steve moved to Maine in 1995 from Denver, CO and worked as a technician at the Southworth Planetarium and the College of Science, Technology and Health at the University of Southern Maine. Steve had a passion for tinkering with small engines, lawnmowers, small trains and in building his own backyard observatory, complete with an adjacent warm room. Steve machined innovative mirror mounts for large aperture reflectors. He also volunteered with the robotics team at Gorham HS when his son was a student there. He and his family also enjoyed skiing and volunteering for trail maintenance on the Appalachian Trail. Steve had a quiet humor and would always lend a hand in figuring out a mechanical issue with a scope or a mount. We lost a great friend and resource in Steve.
Jeff I Weinstein – (11/20/42 – 5/11/21) – Jeff grew up in Portland and earned a degree in Economics from the University of Maine. He served in the Air National Guard and later, the Civil Air Patrol. He was a HAM radio operator which led him to an interest in astronomy. Jeff established several communication and maritime businesses in the area. Jeff also served a term as Vice President of SMA, where his organizational skills helped the club become more effective.
Kirk M. Rogers - (5/19/53 – 1/26/23) – Kirk was a “Navy Brat” growing up at various Navy bases before his family settled in Auburn, ME. After graduating from the University of Maine Farmington, Kirk spent most of his working career in construction and real estate development in projects around the country. He was a man of many interests, each pursued with a passion to thoroughly learn them and fully appreciate them. He never did anything part way. He took up SCUBA diving and logged more than 500 hours underwater. He developed an interest in the Civil War and amassed an extensive library on the war, taking up reenactment roles on both sides of the conflict as his family history showed Rebel and Union soldiers in his lineage. His interest in astronomy developed in the mid-1990’s, first as a member of the Astronomical Society of Northern New England and later as a founding member and director of Southern Maine Astronomers. His interest in astronomy soon turned into an interest in astrophotography at a time when film was transitioning to digital. He became accomplished in both methods, producing some extraordinary results. The frustration with clouds obscuring the night sky hastened a renewed interest in birds and he became an avid bird photographer, posting more than 6,000 images of various birds, all ornithologically organized. Kirk’s website, www.kiroastro.com, featuring his astronomy and bird images, had more than 51 million hits! Kirk had a long-standing interest in music inviting him to again take up guitar, improving upon his already very-accomplished playing. In the early 2000’s Kirk developed a new interest in long-distance motorcycling, owning not one, but two fully outfitted Harley Davidsons. SMA’s street cred was immeasurably enhanced, particularly among younger observers, when Kirk rumbled in to club star parties on his bike, wearing leathers and a dew rag! Kirk gave freely of his time and expertise to anyone needing help. He always found a way to assist someone in need with never an expectation of recompense. He was an inspiring and generous Renaissance Man who will be missed, but never forgotten.