Paul Allen, Microsoft co-founder, philanthropist, and developer dies of cancer at 65

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Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft, passed away yesterday afternoon from the complications of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma at the age of 65, in Seattle.

Allen was also the chairman and owner of Vulcan Inc., a privately held firm that controlled and looked after Allen’s business, investments, and other philanthropic efforts. A statement was released by Vulcan’s CEO Bill Hilf on behalf of the Vulcan Inc., and the Paul G. Allen network which includes Seattle Seahawks, Portland Trailblazers, Stratolaunch Systems, the Allen Institute and the Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence:

“All of us who had the honor of working with Paul feel an inexpressible loss today. He possessed a remarkable intellect and a passion to solve some of the world’s most difficult problems, with the conviction that creative thinking and new approaches could make a profound and lasting impact. Today we mourn our boss, mentor, and friend whose 65 years were too short – and acknowledge the honor it has been to work alongside someone whose life transformed the world.”

Allen had co-founded Microsoft along with Bill Gates, back in 1975. Allen was only 14 years old when he met Gates, who was 12 at the time while attending the Lakeside School outside Seattle. Allen and Gates, both then dropped out of college in June 1975, to pursue their shared passion for computers. It was in 1981 when Allen and Gates, reinvented Q-DOS as MS-DOS and installed it as the operating system for IBM’s PC offering, that catapulted Microsoft into its dominant position in the PC industry.


Bill Gates released a statement on Allen’s death, as first reported by ABC:

Allen was first diagnosed with Stage 1-A Hodgkin’s lymphoma, back in 1982. In 1983, Allen resigned from Microsoft as the executive vice president in research and product development because of these health issues. He then underwent several radiation treatments and his health was restored. Yet another wall hit Allen in 2009 when he further got diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma. However, Allen successfully managed to beat this cancer diagnosis too. It was only earlier this month when he revealed that he has again started his treatments as the cancer is back. Allen tweeted about cancer:

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma is uncommon cancer where the affected lymphocytes start multiplying in an abnormal way and begin to collect in certain parts of the lymphatic system, such as the lymph nodes (glands).

Microsoft released a statement yesterday, “Microsoft is mourning the passing of Paul Allen, a renowned philanthropist and business leader who co-founded the company more than four decades ago”.

Microsoft also tweeted out the statement from Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella:

Apart from Microsoft, Tim Cook, CEO, Apple Inc., also tweeted about Allen’s death.

Over the course of his lifetime, Allen has achieved many outstanding milestones. He was number 21st on Forbes 400 2018 He was also the world’s 27th richest person on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, with a net worth of $26.1 billion. He had also received numerous awards in different areas, such as sports, philanthropy, and the arts.

Many people from the tech community and other fields have paid tribute to Allen on Twitter:

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