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John “Tito” Gerassi

 John 'Tito' Gerassi joined QC club STAND on its annual Genocide Awareness camp-out on the Quad in Spring 2009. Photo Credit: QC STAND
John ‘Tito’ Gerassi joined QC club STAND on its annual Genocide Awareness camp-out on the Quad in Spring 2009.
Photo Credit: QC STAND

Instantly recognized on the Queens College campus, his name serves as a fitting headline for any article.

Born in France on July 1931, Tito passed away in a hospice center in New York City on July 26, 2012. At 81-years-old, he was the only professor who could walk in to a classroom wearing a spandex muscle shirt and get away with it. Son of French artist, Fernando Gerassi, godson of 20th century philosopher, Jean Paul Sarte, Tito was a man of many labels: activist, author, educator, father and journalist, he made sure that everyone he came across knew his views and that he was not shy in voicing them.

Gerassi was admitted to hospice in June 2012.

“He will be sorely missed,” said Patricia Rachal, chair of the political science department.

Beginning his career at QC in Sept. 1978, Gerassi was a published author of four books and a journalist, working with Time magazine and the New York Times. He taught at San Francisco State University and the John Kennedy Freedom School in Berlin. At QC, he instructed four 200 level courses including, Politics of Terrorism and American Foreign Policy. He attained his master’s degree from Columbia University and his doctorate from the London School of Economics.

A message sent out on Aug. 2 by Rachal stated that a memorial event will be planned for the fall 2012 semester.

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