Melvin Astrahan, PhD, DABR, Emeritus Professor, now spends most of his day with his horses and running Eye Physics. In the fall of 2010 at age 58 he retired from the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine in Los Angeles where he had been Chief of Medical Physics and tenured Associate Professor of Radiation Oncology. He had been with USC since 1984 and has authored or coauthored over 75 scientific publications and numerous freeware, shareware and commercial software products. He is a 1980 graduate of the UCLA Medical Physics program.

Prof. Astrahan is also a long time member of AAPM, IOOF and various other professional, service and recreational organizations.

Melvin Astrahan, Jan 2007

Mel recently made a knightly appearance for the IOOF in the Jan. 2nd, 2012 Tournament of Roses Parade. The armor is steel and weighs about 40 lbs. The weapons are fully functional reproductions from Mel's personal collection. He had to stand on that small platform on the float for 3 hours with temperatures rising to about 80 deg F.

Watch the video in HD, be patient, could take a while to download!

Here is a link for a video clip of a mounted shooting course from 9/2006: Successfull under the arm, behind the back trick shot from horseback..

Some Windows PC users may need to download and install the free iTunes (or Quicktime) software from Apple Computer to play these .mp4 encoded videos. After downloading you may need to "unzip" the compressed files to reveal the file inside.

Professor Astrahan can often be spotted wearing buckskin and riding his horse at fairs, rodeos, Old West festivals, and other Cowboy Mounted Shooting venues shooting targets (e.g. balloons) from a full gallop using a pair of 1870s Colt single action army black powder revolvers. Mel was one of the founding directors of the CMSA in the early 1990s.

A special black powder full load "blank" with a balloon popping range of about 20 ft is used in these mounted exhibitions and competitions so there is no risk to the spectators. Mel is also an accomplished Cowboy Action Shooter with live amunition, having won trophies in numerous competitions dating back to the late 1980s.

Mel and Posse, Fall 2006

Mel has also served as George A. Custer's guidon, riding to glory with the 7th Cavalry of 1876 at the Real Bird reenactments (on the actual battlefield) of the battle of Little Big Horn. After more than 130 years of trying, the 7th Cavalry still hasn't found a way to win this battle...

Mel and Posse, Summer 2006

Mel has also served as George A. Custer's guidon with the 7th Cavalry of 1875 at Fort Lincoln near Bismark North Dakota.

Mel at Ft Lincoln ND, Summer 2008

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