Agard, Eugene Theodore (1932–2017)

By Dion E. Phillips

×

Dion E. Phillips is professor of sociology at University of the Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands.

Eugene Theodore Agard was a physicist and Seventh-day Adventist exemplar for creationism.

“Theo,” as he was affectionately called, was born on August 15, 1932, in St. David’s Village, Parish of Christ Church in Barbados. He was the youngest of two children born to Pearl Doris Agard (nee Best) and Samuel Agard.

Theo grew up in a family firmly dedicated to serving God and with a devout adherence to Seventh-day Adventism. From childhood he was an active and dedicated member of the King Street Seventh-day Adventist Church in Bridgetown, Barbados. His family, especially his Uncle George Best (a teacher, headmaster, and first elder), strongly encouraged educational excellence that was God-centered. Along with his unfailing attendance to weekly Sabbath School classes and other religious observance activities which formed the bedrock of his ethos, Theo’s formal high school and higher education were funded through academic scholarships provided by government. As a result, he attended the following educational institutions: St. David’s Boy School; Foundation Boys School; Harrison College (where he won the Deighton Memorial Prize in mathematics); B.S. degree in mathematics and physics (first class honors) from The University of the West Indies at the Mona campus, Jamaica; M.A. degree in physics from the University of London; Ph.D. from The University of Toronto in the same field and successfully fulfilled the requirements for a diploma, Radiological Physics, American Board of Radiology. In spite of these academic accomplishments, throughout his life and career he remained a believer and unflinching advocate of creationism.1

Over the years Dr. Agard touched many young lives in often challenging academic subjects. He taught mathematics at Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts; physics at the University of the West Indies in St. Augustine, Trinidad; the University of Puerto Rico, as well as at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. He taught radiology at Kettering College of Medical Arts in Kettering, Ohio.

As an academic and administrator, he was also instrumental in founding the department of physics at the University of the West Indies in St. Augustine, Trinidad, while serving as a Sabbath School teacher at the nearby Adventist-owned and operated University of the Southern Caribbean (then Caribbean Union College). In addition, he published over 25 articles in scientific journals; served as the academic advisor for over 30 M.S. and Ph.D. degrees,2 loved traveling with his wife, Joyce, and four children–Noel, Ian, Wendy, and Linda–as well as public speaking at professional conferences, together with a relish for presentations at Adventist institutions of higher learning around the world. His address entitled “Nuclear Power and Christian Ethics,” 13th Sir Winston Scott Memorial Lecture at the invitation of Central Bank of Barbados, 1988, is one measure of the respect and high esteem in which he was held in civil society.3

Notwithstanding his many accomplishments as a scholar, author, and practitioner as a physicist, Theodore Agard did not compartmentalize. As a scientist he was not afraid to include God in all that he espoused, both at the personal and professional levels. Even though he knew the misgivings, contempt and disdain many fellow scientists felt toward what they would regard as religious dogma, he did not mince words or leave God out of the social discourse. In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation, Agard, who believed in the supernatural Creation of this world in six days, averred that “… the theory of evolution is not as scientifically sound as many people believe…” 4

Dr. E. Theodore Agard, a physicist and an active member of the Maranatha Seventh-day Adventist Church in Apopka, Florida, and who passed at the age of 85 in 2017,5 was, in his overall deportment, fearless in the promotion of God and his religious affiliation as a Seventh-day Adventist among people who largely did not believe in Him.

Sources

“Celebrating the Life of Dr. Eugene Theodore Agard,” Funeral Program, Maranatha SDA Church, December 31, 2017. In the author’s private collection.

E. Theodore Agard’s resume (undated), a copy in the author’s private collection.

E. Theo Agard, “Medical Physics,” In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation. Edited by John Ashton. Green Forest, AR: Master Books, 2000, 212-214.

“E. Theo Agard, Medical Physics,” chapter 22, posted January 1, 2001, Answers in Genesis. Accessed May 20, 2020. https://answersingenesis.org/answers/books/in-six-days/e-theo-agard-medical-physics/.

E. Theodore Agard, “Nuclear Power and Christian Ethics,” Central Bank of Barbados, December 6, 1988, http://www.centralbank.org.bb/news/article/7896/1988-dr-e-theodore-agard-nuclear-power-and-christian-ethics.

“E. Theo Agard,” Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._Theo_Agard.

Eugene Theodore Agard obituary. https://www.waldonfuneralhome.com/notices/Eugene-Agard.

Notes

  1. E. Theodore Agard’s resume (undated), a copy in the author’s private collection.

  2. Eugene Theodore Agard obituary (https://www.waldonfuneralhome.com/notices/Eugene-Agard);

    “E. Theo Agard,” Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._Theo_Agard.

  3. E. Theodore Agard, “Nuclear Power and Christian Ethics,” Central Bank of Barbados, December 6, 1988, http://www.centralbank.org.bb/news/article/7896/1988-dr-e-theodore-agard-nuclear-power-and-christian-ethics.

  4. E. Theo Agard, “Medical Physics,” In Six Days: Why Fifty Scientists Choose to Believe in Creation, edited by John Ashton (Green Forest, AR: Master Books, 2000), 212-214; “E. Theo Agard, Medical Physics,” chapter 22, posted January 1, 2001, Answers in Genesis, accessed May 20, 2020, https://answersingenesis.org/answers/books/in-six-days/e-theo-agard-medical-physics/.

  5. “Celebrating the Life of Dr. Eugene Theodore Agard,” Funeral Program, Maranatha SDA Church, December 31, 2017, in the author’s private collection.

×

Phillips, Dion E. "Agard, Eugene Theodore (1932–2017)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 01, 2020. Accessed December 02, 2020. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I0Q.

Phillips, Dion E. "Agard, Eugene Theodore (1932–2017)." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. December 01, 2020. Date of access December 02, 2020, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I0Q.

Phillips, Dion E. (2020, December 01). Agard, Eugene Theodore (1932–2017). Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved December 02, 2020, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=5I0Q.