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Giusa Cayrel de Strobel was born in Merano (Italy) in 1920. In 1946 she became doctor in Physical
Sciences at the University of Rome. She was the first woman to be nominated astronomer, at the Observatory of Padova, Asiago site, of which she measured the latitude in 1948. She was married to Roger Cayrel and continued her career in France at the CNRS. She worked on galactic evolution and worked actively on the  analysis of stellar spectra. In 1966 she defended a PhD thesis in France, on the detailed analysis of the atmospheres of K type stars. Her catalogue of stellar abundances has been perused by several generations of astronomer, and after many editions it resulted in 2010 in the catalogue of stellar parameters "PASTEL". In these latter years she devoted her research to the study of the properties
of the "solar twins".

In 1989 she was nominated ``chevalier de la légion d'honneur''.

She was internationally recognized and was president of IAU commission 29 (Stellar spectra) from 1982 to 1985. The first conference of the series "Rencontres de l'Observatoire" in 1998 (Galaxy Evolution - Connecting the distant Universe with the local fossil record) was dedicated to her and Roger Cayrel.

We lose a great friend, but also a real astronomer, capable to communicate her knowledge and her magnificent enthusiasm.