by Surabhi Agarwal
On November 8th, 2018, we lost yet another of our members and keyholder, Arshad Jilani. I had the honor and pleasure to get to know Arshad and his family for the past few years.
He came to the United States more than 40 years ago from Pakistan and worked for
General Electric’s Aerospace Business. During the early years of his career at GE, he was asked to work at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory on Project Viking. The project involved sending two probes to Mars. Arshad often told stories about his time spent in Pasadena and a few years ago he had written about it in the Sidereal Times. Here is a link to the article.
Two years ago some of us had the opportunity to travel to Oregon to watch the total solar eclipse with an ever enthusiastic Arshad filming the event for members to watch. See the film.
After his retirement, he dedicated himself in charitable causes and co-founded Swat Relief Initiative, an organization committed to women’s rights and girls’ education in rural Pakistan.
He is survived by his mother, wife and two children. He was well respected and loved by people who knew him. We will all miss his presence at the observatory and the club meetings.