The June 2016 death of our esteemed colleague, Dr Irving I. Gottesman, was felt as an extreme loss at so many levels by colleagues, students, friends, and family across the globe. Irv's stellar contributions to the field of twin research will continue to be remembered and cited for many years to come. In commemoration of his life and work, I organized a symposium at the 16th meeting of the International Society for Twin Studies, held in Madrid, Spain, November 16–18, 2017. The panelists included mostly former students, as well as colleagues, who presented their scientific research and personal remarks reflecting Irv's profound influence in shaping their lives and careers. A chronology of Irv's academic positions and honors is included in the introduction to this special issue of Twin Research and Human Genetics, followed by brief sketches of the panel participants; their scholarly papers and personal reflections follow.