Astronaut Wubbo Ockels (b.1946) died on May 18. Ockels was the first Dutch astronaut, flying on STS-61-A in 1985, the last successful mission of the Challenger. He was seconded to NASA by the European Space Agency for the flight. Ockels served on the SpaceLab 1 crew and has an asteroid named in his honor.
Editor Vincent van der Linden (b.1934) died on September 1. Van der Linden worked as an editor and publisher at the Netherlands publishing house Bruna Publishing. he helped introduces the works of Philip K. Dick to the Netherlands. he also edited the Ganymede anthology series. Van der Linden was the recipient of the DAP Reinaert literary award and the King Kong Award.
Dutch author W. J. Maryson (b. Wim Stolk, 1950) died on March 9. Maryson won the 2004 Elf Fantasy Award for best fantasy novel for his work De Heer van de Diepten and also won the Paul Harland Prize for the story “Nietzsche Station” in 2007. Maryson’s novel Onmagiër: De torens van Romander was translated into English as The Towers of Romander in 2010. In addition to his work as an author, Maryson organized the Paul Harland Prize for fantasy, science fiction and horror stories. He was a frequent attendee at the World Fantasy Con.
Amsterdam has won the right to host SMOFCon in 2011 The Amsterdam bid, led by Vincent Docherty, had competition from a bid for Maui, led by James Stanley Daugherty. Votes were note actually counted as a separation of ballots into piles indicated that Amsterdam had a majority. SMOFCon 29 will be held at the Park Plaza Victoria Hotel from 2-4 December 2011.