Bernard Beard

Some of you may recall numerous comments on statistics and physics here by commenter “bbbeard.” Sadly, I just received notification that he died over the weekend:

Where: Memphis Botanical Gardens (in the Japanese Garden)
750 Cherry Road

Memphis, TN 38117
Phone: 901.636.4106

Date: Saturday, April 21, 2012

Time: Gathering at 10:00am with Service to begin at 10:30am. Lunch to follow, ending at 1:30pm

Donations can be made to either of the following:

Keystone School
119 E. Craig Place
San Antonio, TX 78212
Phone: 210.735.4022

Donations Link:


MIT Department of Physics
77 Massachusetts Ave., Bldg. 4-309
Cambridge, MA 02139-4307
Phone: 617.452.2807
Donations Link:,DPPH

He was a former colleague of mine at the ARES Corporation (though I never worked with him). The comments section here (as well, of course, as his friends and family) will miss him.

15 thoughts on “Bernard Beard”

  1. Dr. Beard was a colleague of mine as we worked together at the ARES Huntsville office, and I considered him a friend, and I hope he considered me the same.
    Bernard had a wide ranging intellect, and made numerous contributions in a variety of fields, including computational particle physics, before moving into the aerospace field, where he worked for PW in turbojet engines and flight trajectory analysis. He then went into academics, teaching in the ME dept at Christian Brothers in Memphis, and eventually becoming department chair.
    It was my opinion that the progressive politics and trans-logical arguements of the academic world eventually lead him to seek work back in the aerospace world, and it was my pleasure to get to work with him when he joined ARES corp in 2007. There, Bernard made significant contributions in a variety of different areas, most notably in working on slosh mechanics of the Ares I upper stage, where he developed some amazing analytic modeling capabilities. His website, “Slosh Central”, provided a great deal of references regarding this topic.
    Bernard was a reserved, dignified person, of even temperament; calm, and thoughtful. He was a master of the BBQ, and participated in numerous team competitions out of Memphis, where he kept his home with his wife and two sons. He was also scouter, participating as an adult leader in cub and boy scouts with his sons, and this was a area where we found a great deal of common ground.
    I’m sure there were many other things that Bernard did, that I’m not aware of, as would be the case of a man with a powerful intellect and imagination.
    His passing was sudden and unexpected, and is a tragedy. He will indeed be missed.

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