Arthur C. Clarke Funeral Services Tomorrow

Posted on March 21, 2008

Sir Arthur C. Clarke will be buried tomorrow in a ceremony in his adopted country of Sri Lanka.

"It will be a secular, simple funeral and there will be no speeches," said Clarke's aide Nalaka Gunawardena. Clarke who died at the age of 90 on Wednesday had left written instructions that no religious rites of any faith should be associated with his funeral. He will be buried at Colombo's general cemetery in a plot owned by his friend and diving company partner with whom the writer lived for decades, Gunawardena said.

Fred Clarke, his brother, had arrived in the island to participate in the funeral, the aide added. The visionary author won worldwide acclaim with more than 100 books on space, science and the future. The 1968 story 2001: A Space Odyssey- written simultaneously as a novel and screenplay with director Stanley Kubrick - was a frightening prophecy of artificial intelligence run amok. Born in Minehead, England, on Dec. 16, 1917, the son of a farmer, Clarke was also credited with the concept of communications satellites in 1945, decades before they became a reality.

Clarke lived in Sri Lanka since 1956. It's hard to believe he's gone, really. He's been such a force for so long, and now his voice has been silenced. But his writings will live on. Clarke said, "The world needs uninhibited thinkers, not afraid of far-out speculations; it also needs hard-headed, conservative engineers who can make their dreams come true." He was truly an uninhibited thinker.

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