A body found last week in Chile by local authorities has today been confirmed to be that of missing Warwick academic Professor Tom Marsh, the University of Warwick has stated.
Marsh was first reported missing on 16 September. A body was then found on November 10.
The professor had been studying abroad at the La Silla Observatory.
Marsh had a 40-year-long academic career as an astrophysicist. He was a founding professor of Warwick’s astrophysics department. He won awards and was a leading expert in his field.
The University has stated: “We have a heart-breaking update to share on our missing friend and colleague, Professor Tom Marsh.
“The body found by search teams in Chile last week has been confirmed to be Tom. We send our deepest condolences to his family, colleagues, students, and friends.”
The Univesity added: “We would like to thank everyone involved in the search for Tom, including the Chilean authorities for their dedication, expertise, and professionalism; our colleagues at ESO; and Warwickshire Police for their help and guidance during this difficult period.”
Provost of the University of Warwick, Chris Ennew, said: “It’s heart-breaking and painful to know we have lost Tom.
“During the long search operation in the desert area around the European Southern Observatory at La Silla where Tom had been working, we never lost hope that he could be found alive and reunited with his family.
“Our hearts go out to his wife Felicity, son Henry and daughter Tabitha.
“We have been in regular contact with them throughout this ordeal and will continue to offer them our full support.”
Ennew added: “Tom was an outstanding academic and researcher, although in his typically modest way he rarely mentioned his significant achievements.
“He was motivated not by awards but by a deep love and passion for science. But he wasn’t just a brilliant academic. Just as importantly he was kind, considerate and a much-loved member of our community, acting as a mentor and inspiration to generations of students and colleagues. “