Barry Lopez is an award-winning American writer who tries to strengthen the connection between people and place by describing the landscapes he has seen during his 50 years of travel. He was 75 years old.
His family said that Lopez died last Friday in Eugene, Oregon, after years of fighting prostate cancer.
Long-time friend and former Oregon poet award-winning Kim Stafford (Kim Stafford) said that Lopez̵
Lopez has written nearly 20 books and collections of essays and short stories on natural history research, and won the National Book Award in 1986 for “Arctic Dream: The Imagination and Desire of the North”. This is the result of nearly five years of travel to the Arctic.
His last work is “Horizon”, an autobiography that recalls his life traveling in more than 70 countries/regions.
Lopez was born in Port Chester, New York in 1945, and grew up in New York City after remarrying with his mother in the San Fernando Valley, California. In “Horizon”, he wrote that in those growing years, he developed “a desire to disappear. Find a place where the skyline is closed.”
He spent his later years with his wife Debra Gwartney in a woodland on the McKenzie River east of Eugene. After years of articles about the impact of nature and humans on climate change, he mourned the loss of a few acres of wood during the holiday farm fire in September, not to mention personal documents.
In a statement on Saturday, his family encouraged financial support for the McKenzie River Trust, which Lopez and the foundation worked together to protect.