Harold Winters

1931 - 2005

Harold Abraham “Duke” Winters died of a heart attack on Sunday, June 26, 2005, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Winters was born on August 22, 1931, in Chicago, Illinois. After serving in the Navy, he completed his bachelor’s degree at Northern Illinois University, and master’s and doctoral degrees (1960) in geography at Northwestern University. He was a regular faculty member at Northern Illinois University and Portland State University, before a thirty-year tenure at Michigan State University. Winters was also a visiting professor at Northwestern University, Simon Fraser University, Georgetown University, Arizona State University, and the Universities of British Columbia and South Carolina, as well as serving as a guest lecturer at nearly fifty other universities. He had three separate one-year affiliations with the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and was twice awarded the U.S. Army Outstanding Civilian Service Medal.

Winters had research interests in glacial geomorphology, especially of the Midwestern United States, and later in military geography. He authored or co-authored more than 100 academic publications, several with his primary collaborator, Richard Rieck of Western Illinois University. He will be remembered for his book Battling the Elements: Weather & Terrain in the Conduct of War (1998), as well as for his advocacy of classic regional geographic studies. In 1989 Winters earned an AAG Honors citation for his service to the AAG, and in 1995 he received the Mel Marcus Distinguished Career Award from the AAG’s Geomorphology Specialty Group.

Harold Winters (Necrology). 2005. AAG Newsletter 40(8): 29.