He Never Uttered a Cross Word
"Midrash" by George Barany (March 2013)

As you must realize by now, the puzzle honors Bruce Merrifield, my Ph.D. mentor and the 1984 Nobel laureate in Chemistry. I was 16 years old when I was first introduced to Dr. Merrifield, in the summer of 1971 -- he had just turned 50 and been elected to the National Academy of Sciences. It wasn't until years later that I found out how much he and his wife Libby enjoyed solving puzzles, making it part of their regular routine. I still remember discussing with them the two New York Times puzzles (click here and here) that Michael Shteyman and I wrote that came out in 2006, and their delight in working them through. When Bruce passed away on Mother's Day of that year, I was inspired to work with Michael to construct a tribute, but wasn't able to get much beyond some symmetrical theme entries. The project remained dormant until 2010, when a student of mine, Marcia Brott, came up with insights to complete the fill. At that point, I remembered that one of the Merrifield daughters, Betsy Grindstaff, had always wanted to work on writing a puzzle, so I invited her to draft clues, especially with the "inside" information that can only come from being part of a close-knit family. We hope you enjoy the result!


GB WILL WRITE MORE HERE - background, references, etc., maybe some more pictures

If you want to tell others about this particular page, refer them to http://tinyurl.com/crossmidrash

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