Robert E. Shamu obituary

contact: Jeanne Baron
| WMU News
Photo of Dr. Robert E. .


Dr. Robert E. Shamu, a former Western Michigan University faculty member, died Oct. 26. He was 79.

Shamu, of Kalamazoo, joined the faculty in 1967 and retired as a professor emeritus of physics in 2004 after more than 37 years of service to the University.

He was trained in electrical engineering and nuclear physics and made significant contributions at WMU in both research and teaching. During his tenure, he also served as chair of the physics department from 1996 to 1999, and as an assistant chairperson and undergraduate advisor for the department.

Prior to coming to WMU, Shamu was a visiting scientist conducting solid state physics research at the Argonne National Laboratory from 1964 to 1967 and a research fellow in nuclear physics at the Australian National University from 1961 to 1964.

He was granted a sabbatical leave from WMU in 1974-75 to perform neutron scattering experiments at Bruyeres-le-Chatel, a laboratory of the French Atomic Energy Commission. In subsequent years, he did work at Los Alamos National Laboratory as well as followed up with his previous work in France and Australia.

Shamu earned a bachelor's degree from Pennsylvania State University and master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.


A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 11, in the Langeland Family Funeral Home Memorial Chapel, 622 S. Burdick St. in Kalamazoo. Family members will greet friends following the service.

Memorial gifts may be directed to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan; the WMU Foundation, for the Dr. Robert E. Shamu Physics Memorial Fund; or the WMU Department of Physics.

Visit to make a memorial guestbook entry.