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In memoriam: Skov, 81, taught physics at MC for 31 years

07/08/2014
Professor Skov observes a student experiment in a 1960s photo.
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Charles “Bud” Skov, professor emeritus of physics at Monmouth College, died July 5, 2014, at the age of 81.
 
Skov taught at Monmouth from 1963 to 1994, chairing the physics department for several of those 31 years.
 
Known as an outstanding teacher who challenged his students, Skov saw many of them go on to very successful careers. One of those students was Hiroyuki Fujita ’92, an entrepreneur who recently returned to campus to present a Whiteman Lecture.
 
“He was not only an amazing physics professor but a great and warm human being,” recalled Fujita, the president and CEO of Quality Electrodynamics. “I visited his office to ask him many questions after class almost every day during my student life at Monmouth, and I enjoyed every occasion with him. Dr. Skov was always happy to see me and welcomed me. … (He) definitely influenced my physics career and my understanding of American life. I will miss him.” 
 
Jeremy McNamara, emeritus professor of English, remembers his faculty colleague of 30 years for his “sensitive, thoughtful responses to the many issues the college faced during the varying fortunes of those three decades.”
 
Added McNamara, “We met socially very often, and I learned of his interest in nature and travel – trips that he and (his wife) Ann took to enjoy the sand hills of their native Nebraska, to see the fall foliage of New England, to explore the Natchez Trace.”
 
In addition to his teaching duties, Skov was faculty representative to the Midwest Conference for several years and spent 15 months tenure as the Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM) representative at the Argonne National Laboratory.
 
He had affiliations with SigmaXi, The American Physical Society, The American Association of Physics Teachers and the American Association of University Professors. He also served on the Human Rights Authority Committee for the State of Illinois, where McNamara said Skov was “a very effective member, well respected for his compassion and independent judgement.” 
 
Skov completed his undergraduate work at his hometown college, Kearney State Teacher’s College in Kearney, Neb. He then served his country in the U.S. Army from 1954 to 1956 in the Signal Corps. He received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Nebraska in the same year that he joined Monmouth’s faculty.
 
He and Ann would have celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on July 11. Other survivors include the Skovs’ three children, Mitchell Skov, Norman Skov and Sarah Skov Hennemann. Mitch graduated from Monmouth in 1980 and Sarah in 1990.
 
A memorial service will be held on July 9 at 11 a.m. at the First United Methodist Church in Monmouth. Friends may call from 9:30 to 11 a.m. at the church, where his family will be present.  In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the First United Methodist Church; WVIK public radio, Rock Island, Ill.; or the Knox County Nursing Home, Knoxville, Ill.