Stephen Hawking’s Children (The Complete story)

In this article, we will find out who were the children of the world’s renowned English theoretical physicist, cosmologist and the director of research at the Center for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge up until the time of his death.

Children of Stephen Hawking:

The children of Stephen Hawking with his wife Jane Wilde, were the following:

  • Robert, born May 1967
  • Caterine Lucy, born November 1969
  • Timothy, born April 1979

Hawking had left a flurry of advice to his children, and one of them is to “remember to look up at the stars and not down on your feet.” He would always be a true modern legend to the eyes of his children. And will be remembered by his quote, “Never give up work. Work gives you meaning and purpose and life is empty without it.”, and “if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is rare and don’t throw it away.”

One might be curious as to how it is to have an internationally acclaimed father. Let’s take a look at the life of his children and their relationship with their father.

Robert Hawking:

Robert was born in 1967 and the eldest of the three siblings. He is currently 52 years old and a prominent software engineer. As a child, it was expected that Robert would follow his father’s footsteps into science. He developed some interests in science and has expressed his desire to become a scientist, but later chose to study software engineering and graduated from the University of Oxford. He now lives in Seattle, Washington with his wife and his kids, and presently works at Microsoft Corporation as a software engineer.

Robert Hawking is a family person and dotes on his father. He took care of his father from his early age as his father suffered from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).  In his mother’s memoir, Traveling to Infinity: My Life with Stephen, “ she mentioned that Robert as a son “had to do things for his father that children really shouldn’t have.”

He had a great relationship with his father as apparent in his eulogy he posted in Medium.  He stated “ My father told us many times how proud he was of his children. At first, I was uncertain how to respond, not having had something like “Hawking Radiation” named after me. After a while, after becoming a father myself, that it was the inherent pride of a father in children he loved and who loved him. So Dad, I am proud of you, the father.”

Catherine Lucy Hawking:

Lucy is an English journalist, novelist, educator and philanthropist.She was raised in Cambridge after spending a few years in Pasadena, California. She went to Stephen Perse Foundation, and studied French and Russian at the University of Oxford. She stayed in Moscow, Russia to focus on her Russian studies. She also had a postgraduate degree in International Journalism at the City University of London.  

She worked as a radio journalist, and even wrote for New York magazine, the Daily Mail, The Telegraph, The Times, the London Evening Standard, and The Guardian. Lucy also dreamed of becoming an author. She wrote Jaded (2004), and Run for Your Life (2005). She also wrote George’s Secret Key to the Universe when she transitioned to writing childrens’ books in 2007 together with her father and his former Ph.D. student Christopher Galfard. 

It is about a small boy named George who finds adventure in the solar system through a computer generated portal. Five other books have followed the series, George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt, George and the Big Bang, George and the Unbreakable Code, George and the Blue Moon and George and the Ship of Time. 

All of her books were about teaching kids science and education. She took interest in this theme when during a party, one of her son’s friends asked her father about black holes. He responded by telling him that “he’d turn into spaghetti”, and the boy was amused. She then got inspired to use amusement in educating scientific understandings.

Lucy is also the vice president of the National Star College, a foundation which provides care and education to young adults with complex disabilities through personalized learning, and lifestyle services. She is also part of the Autism Research Trust.

Lucy is a pretty, petite and compact blonde married to UN Peace Corps member, Alex Smith, for six years until they got divorced. Their son, William, was born a year into the marriage and was later diagnosed with autism. She had depression and resorted to alcohol to cope up. Eventually, she sought help and recovered and her son’s condition served as her inspiration to begin supporting children who had autism.

Timothy Hawking:

Timothy, is the youngest of the siblings born into controversy of his paternity, Jane, his mother, claims no doubt that Stephen is his father. He was born on April 15, 1979 in St. Albans, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom. He grew up with siblings Robert and Lucy, though he never had a happy childhood.

Timothy was only able to have a two-way conversation with his father after his fifth birthday when Stephen used his voice box. Once in an interview, Timothy stated that his father was only able to use his natural voice in the early years of his birth and he has no clear understanding of what he was saying. There wasn’t a proper communication between Timothy and his father for the first five years of his life.

Despite the difficulties of his childhood, he became close with father and revealed that they used to play chess together and weren’t easy to beat.  He used to play pranks with his father by adding some swear words in his speech program, according to a BBC documentary.


Timothy is a graduate of the Exert University of England with a degree in French and Spanish, and after in University of Birmingham. He has led a quiet life and worked for some small companies in the UK.  He joined LEGO as a loyalty executive, and most recently as a brand development manager in London.

The life of the famous Stephen Hawking:

Stephen Hawking, born January 8, 1942 in Oxford, England, to a family of doctors, as eldest among four siblings. He was a world-renowned theoretical physicist, cosmologist and considered to be one of the greatest minds that ever lived. Though he was considered a genius, and called an Einstein, he never fared really well in school as a young boy. Hawking surprisingly received below average grades in school. 

As he grew older, he became passionate in mathematics and sciences. He applied for a Physics and Chemistry scholarship at the University of Oxford and a doctoral degree in Cosmology at the University of Cambridge. 

Stephen met his wife, Jane Wilde, in 1962 a year after he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s disease. ALS is a progresive nervous system disease that affects the brain and spinal cord of the body causing it to lose control. ALS starts with weakness or twitching of the limbs, or slurred speech. It affects the control of the muscles needed to move, speak, eat and breath. 

ALS is an incurable disease. Yet, the couple were married in 1965 in their hometown St. Albans, even though the impending challenges lay ahead of them regarding Stephen’s health. They had three children, Robert, Lucy and Timothy. 

In 1997, Stephen’s wife met Jonathan Hellyer Jones singing in a church choir and he became close to the Hawkings. Jane and Jonathan had a platonic relationship for a long period of time. By the 1980’s, his marriage with Jane had been strained by many intrusions in their life. In 1985, after Stephen’s tracheotomy, he required 24/7 care and was attended to by three shifting nurses. 

Hawkings grew close to one of the nurses, Elaine Mason, much to his family’s dismay. In February 1990, Hawking left Jane to be with Elaine and they got divorced in 1995. Stephen and Elaine got married and the former allegedly encountered physical abuse from the latter. They eventually got divorced in 2006 quietly, and Hawking resumed with his relationship with Jane, his children and grandchildren.

Stephen Hawking lived to be 76 years old, even when his doctors predicted that he wouldn’t last until his 23rd birthday. He passed away on March 14, 2018 in his sleep peacefully. Stephen Hawking’s children Robert, Lucy and Timothy were 51, 47 and 39 years old whey they lost their father. 

What was most impressive about the life of Stephen Hawking was not the longevity of his life battling the disease, but on how he inspired the world. He lived to see the world with fresh eyes, like it was his last day alive. Though the disease crippled him and his body betrayed him, his mind and spirit is free and limitless.

One of the best quotes that captures his life is: “If you are disabled, it is probably not your fault, but it is no good blaming the world or expecting it to take pity on you. One has to have a positive attitude and must make the best of the situation that one finds oneself in; if one is physically disabled, one cannot afford to be psychologically disabled as well.

Conclusion:

The Hawking children, Robert, Lucy and Timothy have chosen different career paths from their father, but there’s no doubt how much influence their father had with them. To the public, Stephen Hawking was a legend, and will always be remembered for his contribution to science and cosmology. But to his children, he will be remembered as a loving father, the one that they will most miss in their lives.

FAQ on “Stephen Hawking’s Children”:

Who is Stephen Hawking’s daughter?

Stephen Hawking had one daughter, Catherine Lucy Hawking, born Nov. 2, 1969, is an English journalist, philanthropist, novelist and educator. She is a children’s book writer, and lives in London.

Who is the biological father of Stephen Hawking’s third child?

According to Jane Hawking, there is no doubt that the father of her third child is Stephen Hawking, despite the controversies that surround the circumstance of the birth of their third child, Timothy.

How much was Stephen Hawking worth?

At the time of his death, Stephen Hawking is worth $20 million.

Why did Stephen Hawking live so long?

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is one of the several types of motor neuron diseases which gradually paralyzes the patient until eventually it kills him. Hawking was diagnosed in 1963, when he was 21. Part of his longevity might be attributed to the proper medical care and attention he gets. It could also be because he had a slow progressive type of ALS.

Was Stephen Hawking the smartest man alive?

Stephen Hawking was considered to be one of the smartest people living mainly because of his contribution to theories and work on black holes.

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephen_Hawking

https://www.thefamouspeople.com/profiles/robert-hawking-33237.php

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucy_Hawking

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