Obituary Robin Overstreet

In Memory

Dr. Robin Overstreet

1 June 1939 – 21 May 2022

The US branch of EAFP is saddened to hear of the passing of one of our esteemed members, Dr. Robin Overstreet, a highly respected fish parasitologist and pathologist. His scientific career, spanning more than 50 years, was based at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory, in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, USA.

Robin’s education included a BA in General Biology from the University of Oregon (1963), a MS and PhD in Marine Biology from the Institute of Marine Sciences, University of Florida (1966 and 1968 respectively), and a postdoctoral fellowship at Tulane University Medical School. His life experience also include time in the US Navy after high school. This was a formative time, as he was an assistant to an oceanographer onboard at Antarctic icebreaker, collecting water and biological specimens, many of which are still vouchered in the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.

Dr. Overstreet’s parasitology research was diverse and expansive, including taxonomy, systematics, life histories, diagnosis and management of diseases, ecology, pathogenesis and host-parasite relationships, and public health. His knowledge of digeneans is of special note. Dr. Overstreet’s expertise also extended into applied and basic aspects of aquaculture and fisheries science, ranging from shrimps, to crayfish, crabs, and finfish. Robin also has research interests in environmental biology and neoplasms, in the field and in the laboratory.

This most prolific career included more than 400 publications, serving as editor or associate editor for 12 journals, leading the American Society of Parasitologists as their President, supervising 14 Ph.D. students, and being honored nationally and internationally. Dr. Overstreet’s impact on helminth taxonomy is reflected in having had more than 30 species named in his honor.

Robin shared his infectious enthusiasm and scientific rigor generously. His diverse professional life, and a range of fascinating interests beyond the lab, made for a fine individual, who enriched the lives of his colleagues, students, family and friends.

Sarah Louise Poynton