I learned by accident that PHYSICS TODAY was preparing a special issue in memory of Richard Feynman, whose death about a year ago shocked his fellow physicists worldwide so deeply. In looking at the tentative list of contributors to the memorial issue, I noticed with surprise that it consisted almost entirely of theoretical physicists. While eminent theorists obviously were best qualified to eulogize Feynman's extraordinary contributions to their own specialty, something essential might have been lost to the readers by this restricted choice. Feynman was not a theorist's theorist, but a physicist's physicist and a teacher's teacher.
Feynman's theoretical concepts opened up research opportunities for experimenters, and his approach to physics dignified the role played by their work.