"What does one do when the giants pass away?" remarked a very famous microbiologist to me, soon after the death of Carl Woese in late 2012. I teach microbiology and introductory cell and molecular biology at a small undergraduate institution; Woese's example and contributions have long been part of every class I teach, and with good reason. Thus, I didn't know quite what to say to my colleague at first; I was still mentally processing the event.
Keywords: Woese; commentary; education; paradigm shift; phylogenetics; undergraduate.