Stephen Hawking is a brilliant scientist and a man of exceptional fortitude. Despite the difficult, incurable diagnosis, until his last days he was engaged in science and tried to lead an active life. Contrary to all predictions, Hawking died at the age of 76, which is a huge rarity in his illness. In addition, in the difficult fate of the scientist, there was a place for two marriages, love and the birth of three children.
Until the age of 20, Stephen Hawking lived a carefree and eventful life, studying at Oxford and Cambridge. He was full of desire to change the world, to unravel the secrets of space and the principles of the universe. He was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) in 1963 at the age of 21. For many years, the disease gradually deprived the scientist of physical activity, which is why he even lost the ability to speak. But Hawking did not abandon his studies in science and was even able to communicate with the outside world using a computer program specially created for him. Fortunately, his illness progressed slowly, and the famous theoretical physicist lived with her for over 50 years.
Even before the terrible diagnosis was made, Stephen met his future wife, Jane Wilde. They met while Hawking was attending graduate school in Cambridge. Their paths crossed at a party with mutual friends in 1962. About a week after the first meeting, the young people accidentally collided on the street, and Stephen asked the girl out on a date.
Jane was two years younger than her chosen one. She studied languages at Westfield College at the University of London. Wilde did not abandon her lover when she found out about his incurable disease. They got engaged in October 1964, and in July 1965 they got married in Cambridge. By that time, Stephen was already using a cane, having significant difficulty walking.
While Jane studied in London, the couple lived separately during the working week. In 1967, they had their first child, a son, Robert, and three years later, a daughter, Lucy, was born. In 1979, they became parents for the third time: the Hawking family was replenished with another son, who was named Timothy.
Of course, over the years of marriage, all the everyday difficulties, caring for her husband and raising children were completely on Jane's shoulders. Stephen's illness progressed, he began to use a wheelchair, and his speech became completely unintelligible. Although her husband was an atheist, Mrs. Hawking admitted that her Christian faith helped her overcome everyday difficulties. This brave and strong woman did not forget about her career. In 1981, she successfully defended her doctoral dissertation, earning her Ph. D. in medieval Spanish poetry.
Hawking's graduate students and students helped his wife to look after the scientist. Thanks to this, she continued her scientific work and found time for a new hobby - singing in the church choir. In late 1977, Jane developed a friendly relationship with organist Jonathan Hillier Johnson. The man became a frequent visitor to the Hawking family, and the mutual sympathy that the new friend and his wife felt for each other did not escape the scientist's attention. However, perfectly aware of his condition, Stephen did not mind Jane's romance on the side.
Jane and Jonathan Hillier Jones
In the mid-80s, the famous physicist found himself on the verge of life and death. He suffered severe pneumonia, during which his wife was even offered to disconnect her husband from life support devices. Fortunately, she refused. When Hawking's condition improved slightly, he still required 24-hour medical care. Jane was offered to place her husband in a specialized institution, but she again showed firmness of character and said that Stephen would live at home. From that moment on, nurses were constantly on duty next to him, who worked in three shifts. The costly care was paid for by an American foundation. Mrs. Hawking could hardly bear the presence of strangers and numerous assistants in the house.
Caregiver and wife
During an exacerbation of the disease, Hawking became close to one of the nurses - Elaine Mason. Soon he told his wife that he wanted to divorce, as he fell in love with another woman. The family and friends of the scientist were worried about his relationship with Elaine. They suspected Stephen's nurse of self-interest. However, this did not stop the famous physicist from moving out of the family home in early 1990. Steven and Jane officially divorced five years later.
In the same year, the scientist married a second time to Elaine Mason. For his sake, the woman left her husband David, with whom she lived for 15 years and gave birth to two sons. By the way, Elaine's first husband was a huge fan of Hawking and participated in the development of a speech synthesizer for him. By the way, the scientist's ex-wife also married longtime lover Jonathan Hillier Jones in 1997.
Over the years of her second marriage, rumors of Elaine's ill-treatment of her famous spouse repeatedly arose. On his body, cuts and bruises of unknown origin were found several times. Once Hawking's daughter Lucy even called the police into his house, claiming that her father was being mistreated. True, despite numerous investigations, the scientist himself never once brought charges against his second wife. In 2006, the couple quietly and peacefully divorced.
Starring Jane and the lead roles in Stephen Hawking Universe.
Mason prevented the physicist from communicating with the first family, therefore, after the divorce, his children and first wife again began to take an active part in Stephen's life. Jane Wilde published in 1999 a memoir about her life with the famous scientist, and in 2007 a new, expanded and edited version of her book was published. Based on this edition, the famous biopic "The Universe of Stephen Hawking" was filmed in 2014.