Gene passed away on March 4, 2017, at Lighthouse Memory Care in Anacortes, Washington, at the age of 96. He was born to Nicholas and Eugenie Kozloff on September 26, 1920, in Tehran, Iran, where his father was serving in the Russian Army that occupied part of Iran before and during World War I. The family immigrated to the United States in 1921, unable to return to their homeland after the 1917 Russian Revolution. Gene grew up with his older brother Nick and sister Nina in Riverside, California, where his lifelong love of animals and plants began.
After attending Riverside Junior College he married Anne Solomon on October 20, 1944, and the couple moved to Berkeley where Gene received his Master’s and Doctoral degrees at the University of California. He then began a long career of teaching biology and invertebrate zoology, first at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon, and then after 1966 at UW Friday Harbor Laboratories. He also taught occasional classes for the San Juan Nature Conservancy, the North Cascades Institute, the Skagit Master Gardeners, and others. Gene (or “Koz” as he was affectionately called by students and colleagues) was an impassioned teacher and an inspiration to many of his students. He was the author of several books, including “Seashore Life of the Northern Pacific Coast” and “Plants and Animals of the Pacific Northwest,” and wrote many articles for scientific journals. After moving to Anacortes in 2007, he continued to do research at Shannon Point Marine Center for several more years. “Retirement” was not in his vocabulary. Gene had many hobbies and interests: he enjoyed playing the viola da gamba with friends both in Friday Harbor and Anacortes; spent hours listening to opera and classical music; was an avid gardener, photographer, art and stamp collector; traveled abroad for work and pleasure; and gave talks on Post-Impressionist French painting. In his last few years, his brilliant mind and wit may have been lost to Alzheimer’s, but he never lost his kindness and graciousness. A true gentleman to the very end.
Gene is survived by his wife Anne, daughter Rae and her partner Jim Wells of Anacortes. No services are planned, but there may be a celebration of life sometime in the summer.
Memorials may be made to the UW Foundation (Eugene N. Kozloff Endowed Fund), Friday Harbor Laboratories, 620 University Road, Friday Harbor, WA 98250, by mail or online.