On the Passing of David Brower

Earthjustice on the passing of David Brower.


Tom Turner, Earthjustice, 415-627-6700

Dave Brower died yesterday, Sunday the fifth of November, at his home in Berkeley. Anne, his wife, and all four children were with him. He was eighty-eight and just gave out, having battled cancer and various other afflictions. As those who know him would expect, he went down fighting.

Here are some reflections by friends and admirers at Earthjustice:

Buck Parker, Executive Director, Earthjustice

“Dave Brower challenged his fellow conservationists to be more ambitious and less apologetic in combating the institutions and practices that are destroying our human and natural environment. He could, and readily would, inspire us, cajole us, and goad us – occasionally all at the same time. He symbolized the passion and reverence of all those who work to protect wild places and left a unique and lasting mark on the environmental movement and the American scene. It is hard to imagine that the environmental movement would be as strong as it is today had there been no Dave Brower.”

Tom Turner, Director of Publications, Earthjustice

“My family joined the Browers and maybe 20 other people on a farewell visit to what was left of Glen, the canyons of the Escalante River, including the stupendous Cathedral in the Desert. To see up close what was about to be drowned forever was an experience that still brings tears to my eyes and fury to my soul.”

“Dave was many things, as has been chronicled elsewhere, many times over. Mountaineer, writer, photographer, editor, visionary, sound-bite genius, mesmerizing speaker. I learned all I know about writing, editing, thinking clearly, asking good questions, being skeptical, and sticking with a job from Dave. He was forever quoting people to make his points, so maybe I’ll just quote him, the tribute he paid Rachel Carson upon her death:

“She did her homework, she minded her English, and she cared.”

I miss you, Dave Brower, we all miss you. Thank you for all you did for us all, and for the earth.”

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Earthjustice is the premier nonprofit environmental law organization. We wield the power of law and the strength of partnership to protect people's health, to preserve magnificent places and wildlife, to advance clean energy, and to combat climate change. We are here because the earth needs a good lawyer.