Marcello Truzzi, Ph.D., (1935 – 2003) was a good friend to the International Remote Viewing Association itself and to several of its officers and directors. Not only did he participate as an active member of the group that founded IRVA in March 1999 in Alamagordo, New Mexico, but he continued to provide input and guidance as an official advisor to the organization throughout the remainder of his life, even making an important presentation on skepticism and remote viewing at the Year 2000 Remote Viewing Conference held in Mesquite, Nevada. One of Marcello’s articles, “On Pseudo-Skepticism,” was printed in Aperture, Volume 1, No. 2 (Spring 2002).
Marcello was a “skeptic’s skeptic,” adhering to the best skeptical principles, and displaying an intellectual honesty second to none on either side of the parapsychology debate. One of the founders of the Committee for the Scientific Investigation of Claims of the Paranormal (CSICOP), he later broke with and denounced that organization, accusing his former colleagues of intellectual dishonesty in their ideologically-based attacks on parapsychologists and parapsychology research. He created the term “scoffers” to distinguish between closed-minded debunkers and true skeptics, who investigate claims with an open-minded and tolerant attitude. Though seldom acknowledged, it was Marcello Truzzi who originally coined the term “extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof,” though he never intended the principle thus represented to be used as a club, as it often is.
Born into a circus family, Marcello had a broad command of sleight-of-hand and magical tricks that proved useful in ferreting out the frauds that often burrow their way into the ranks of psychics and practitioners of intuitive arts. And he had an encyclopedic knowledge not only of skeptic arguments, and of the history and practice of parapsychology, but of the philosophy of science, as well.
Marcello Truzzi was a warm, friendly, and engaging personality who harbored a keen, incisive mind and a commitment to the truth. He was a great resource to IRVA and the world, and will be sorely missed.