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Douglas M. Morton

Douglas M. Morton

stories told through schlieren

Doug’s Funeral will be held October 7 at Montecito Memorial Park in Colton. Because of covid precautions, the funeral services will be restricted to immediate family. We are planning a virtual (Zoom) memorial service for all of Doug and Robyn’s extended family and friends on Oct 9 at 6 PM (PST). Please contact Alex Lennert ( for the Zoom link. Doug’s family would like to thank all of you for your support of Doug and Robyn all these years and we hope to see you soon at our virtual memorial.

About Us

We are part of Doug and Robyn Morton’s extended family. All of us had our lives enriched and transformed by their kindness, mentorship and love. This website is dedicated to celebrating their lives.

There are three ways to contribute content to this living document

1. You can send content and media to Alex Lennert at or Cin-Ty Lee at

2. Type into the comment box at the bottom of the page, but this does not allow media upload.

3. Or contact Alex or Cin-Ty and ask to be designated as an author, which allows you to upload and edit your content on your own. This may sound intimidating, but it is easy and we will provide help if needed.

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  1. My wife, Juv, and I joined Doug and Robyn on several extended birding trips in the late 80s and early…

  2. I was introduced to Doug Morton at Pomona College sometime around 1976-79, and visited with him many times thereafter. He…

  3. Indeed, a loss, but a great geologist, teacher, and person; his brutal but caring honesty by being blunt, it was…

  4. Our home will never be the same without Grandpapi. He will be in our thoughts and hearts forever! Thank God…

7 thoughts on “Douglas M. Morton

  1. I love this! It gives a clear idea of what an amazing geologist and scientist he was! He was so humble and caring at home! I just knew that he raised an amazing son and was a very loving husband, father, father-in-law and Grandpop to our kids!!! How can we exist without him now?😔😭

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I miss him. Every time I look at a bird or a road cut or outcrop I’ll think of him. He has had a huge influence on me and on others. He will be missed.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I will miss Doug terribly. I came to UCR as a faculty member in the Fall of 2000 just one year after finishing my Ph.D. in seismology, with a focus on earthquake physics, but with very little geological knowledge. Doug greeted me with wide open arms–welcoming me into the department, and truly serving as a mentor for how to navigate UCR. He always had time to chat with me and give me advice, or listen to me when I felt overwhelmed as a new faculty member. He also shared with me his unparalleled knowledge of Southern California geology, helping me to put my theoretical concepts into a geological, real-world context. We worked together in some of my classes, taking us on field trips to local faults, where I would madly try to take notes and commit to memory as much of Doug’s knowledge as possible. I will always treasure these memories. Doug was also a tireless advocate for our students and junior faculty, and he was particularly interested in providing opportunities to students from backgrounds typically under-represented in science. UCR has lost one of its true lions. Doug was a wonderful colleague and friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Doug was a great mentor to me and many colleagues, beginning in the late 70s. We bounced ideas in the field off each other many times. He zinged me a few times (deservedly), but his comments were always helpful and helped all of us arrive at consensus. He was one of the first people to convince me of the possibility of huge landslides in the field. He was a giant in geology, an icon of UCR and a hero to me. RIP

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Indeed, a loss, but a great geologist, teacher, and person; his brutal but caring honesty by being blunt, it was a superb attribute of Dr. Morton. My friendship with Doug Morton centered around birding and typically not geology. However, one the most memorable day’s spend with Doug was after a morning birding exercise in San Jacinto Valley some 30 years ago. Morton said “McKernan would you like to see some real science?”, Doug’s crafty way of getting the adrenaline flowing. I said “sure!” so we proceeded to Gilman Springs Road near Jack Rabbit Trail, parked, and Doug lead me on a journey through a series of lateral landslides along the southern flank of the Badlands. For a few afternoon hours Doug was in his element, he was animated and clearly in his “teaching mode,” articulating the landforms with observable sodality, and I was listening. Nevertheless on this fall afternoon in the Badlands, along the way I would take the opportunity to call out the bubbly notes and buzzy trills from Brewer’s Sparrows from the Atriplex, which alerted his attention briefly, but would not break Doug’s discourse of the landscape facts in front of us. An unforgettable day, one of many, with a person that I believe figured it out… A terrific person who will be missed and left 7.5min Quads as his heritage!


  6. My wife, Juv, and I joined Doug and Robyn on several extended birding trips in the late 80s and early 90s.. On our first of three out-of-country trips, i was checking to see if my legs would ever work again as the plane rolled into the airport. Doug walked by and said he picked up 3 life birds along the taxiway. From that point on, I knew I would experience some very special things about travel and birding. Those trips and the joy of being with Robyn and Doug for all those “see you at first light” moments are among my most cherished memories. Thank you Doug and Robyn.


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