The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Wayne O’Neil

The Department of Linguistics & Philosophy at MIT is very sad to share the news that our esteemed and beloved colleague of many decades, Professor Wayne O’Neil, has died. He was chair of the MIT Linguistics program for eleven years (1986-1997) and head of the Department of Linguistics & Philosophy from 1989 to 1997. He guided the department with wisdom, compassion, and skill, longer than any other head. His contributions to the field are marked by the same qualities that he brought to the headship.

Alongside his rich and fruitful scholarly life, he and his partner, Professor Maya Honda, worked selflessly to bring linguistics to the wider world, including unstinting work with Native Americans and with students in junior high and high school classrooms. Wherever this duo went, they were met with friendship and gratitude. In his long and fruitful career, Professor O’Neil and his partner and colleague have left behind a host of grateful students and teachers.

Wayne’s website: http://linguistics.mit.edu/user/waoneil

A 2011 news article about Wayne and Maya’s work on education and linguistics: http://news.mit.edu/2011/esl-linguistics-0505