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In Memoriam

Yale Medicine Magazine, 2008 - Spring


Norman H. Bass, M.D. ’62, a physician-educator, neuroscientist, and child and adult neurologist, died on February 24 at his home in West Falmouth, Mass. He was 71. In 1963 Bass was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the medical corps of the Army National Guard, from which he retired as a major and medical battalion commander. Before beginning a practice in Cape Cod, Bass held professorships at Boston University, the University of Pittsburgh, the University of Maryland, the University of Kentucky and the University of Virginia. His achievements in academic medicine were published in the 2007 edition of Who’s Who in America.

Malcolm B. Bowers Jr., M.D., HS ’65, professor emeritus and senior research scientist in psychiatry, died on January 13 at his home in Branford, Conn. He was 74. Bowers spent 45 years on the Yale faculty, serving as chief of psychiatry at Yale-New Haven Hospital and director of residency training and attending psychiatrist at Yale-New Haven Psychiatric Hospital. He was the author of several books, including Retreat From Sanity, A Psychiatrist Recollects and Abetting Madness. His most recent book, Men and Poisons: The Edgewood Volunteers and the Army Chemical Warfare Research Program, was published in 2005.

John C. Carpenter, M.D. ’47, died on January 7 in Aventura, Fla. He was 85. Carpenter served as an assistant medical officer in the U.S. Army in Virginia and in Germany. In 1957 he joined Canandaigua Medical Group, in Canandaigua, N.Y., where he practiced until 1987.

Richard H. Cote, M.D. ’48, died on November 3 in Santa Rosa, Calif. He was 82. During World War II Cote received a Victory Medal, Good Conduct Medal and American Theater Campaign Ribbon for his service in the U.S. Army 3305th Service Unit. He also served in the U.S. Air Force in a MASH unit in Korea in 1950. He was an orthopaedic surgeon with a practice in Santa Rosa from 1960 until his retirement in 1997. He was a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.

Joseph F.J. Curi, M.D. ’64, died in October in Goshen, Conn., of acute myelogenous leukemia. He was 69. A captain in the U.S. Air Force, Curi served in the 392nd Aerospace Medical Group at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. In 1970, after a fellowship in adolescent medicine at Harvard, he joined the staff of Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington, Conn. He also had a solo practice in pediatrics and adolescent medicine for 34 years. He was a member of the Connecticut State Medical Society, the Litchfield County Medical Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics. He was class secretary for his medical school class and served on the executive committee of the Association of Yale Alumni in Medicine. Curi received the Distinguished Alumni Service Award in June 2004.

Hillary Blair Stanton Foulkes, M.P.H. ’07, died on December 21 in Austin, Texas, of complications from leukemia. She was 25. Born in Natick, Mass., Stanton Foulkes graduated from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2005 and took a position as a research assistant at the Harvard School of Public Health before beginning her studies at Yale. After her graduation she received a two-year fellowship from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and began working as an epidemiology fellow with the Department of State Health Services in Austin. She was an accomplished musician and dancer, performing with the MIT Wind Ensemble and the MIT Dance Troupe.

Ward S. Jenkins, M.D. ’44, died on October 31 in Burlington, Vt. He was 86. After receiving his medical degree Jenkins joined the Army Medical Corps. After eight years as a general practitioner in Salem, N.Y., he studied allergy at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington and joined the Toledo Clinic in 1958. He practiced there until his retirement.

Edna M. Klutas, R.N., M.P.H. ’57, died on September 9 in Newville, Penn. She was 89. Klutas was a veteran of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps, serving in Puerto Rico and Virginia from 1942 to 1946. From 1955 to 1956 she was the acting executive director of the American Association of Industrial Nurses and served as one of the organizing board members of the American Board for Occupational Health Nurses (ABOHN) in 1969. In 1975 she served as chair of the ABOHN board.

Joshua Lederberg, Ph.D. ’47, Nobel laureate, University Professor and president emeritus of The Rockefeller University, died of pneumonia on February 2 in New York City. He was 82. Lederberg began medical school at Columbia’s College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1944 but took a leave of absence in 1946 to work in genetics with Edward L. Tatum, Ph.D., at Yale. In 1958, at the age of 33, Lederberg shared the Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine with Tatum for their work on the organization of genetic material in bacteria. He advised nine United States presidential administrations, and was a distinguished molecular geneticist whose achievements helped to stimulate the current revolution in molecular biology and biotechnology. The son of a rabbi, Lederberg was born in Montclair, N.J., in 1925, and graduated from Stuyvesant High School in New York City at the age of 15. He received his bachelor’s degree from Columbia College in 1944. He held appointments at the University of Wisconsin and Stanford University School of Medicine before becoming the fifth president of The Rockefeller University in 1978. He retired in 1990. While at Yale, he made the seminal discovery that a form of sexual reproduction occurs in bacteria, demonstrating that bacteria possess a genetic mechanism called recombination, similar to that of higher organisms, including humans. He later showed that bacterial genetic material is exchanged not only by conjugation, when the entire complement of chromosomes is transferred from one bacterial cell to another, but also by transduction, when only fragments are transferred. More recently, his work addressed the way in which the activation of genes alters their vulnerability to mutagenesis. Lederberg served in the U.S. Navy during World War II as a medical corpsman in the clinical pathology laboratory of St. Albans Naval Hospital in Queens, N.Y. After the war he worked on many government advisory committees and boards dealing with research on physical and mental health. He played an active role in the Mariner and Viking missions to Mars sponsored by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. He was a consultant to the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency during the negotiation of the biological weapons disarmament treaty, and he continued to advise the federal government on national security issues. In addition to the Nobel Prize, Lederberg was honored with many awards and prizes, including the National Medal of Science in 1989 and the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2006. He was also a member of the boards of several foundations, including the Carnegie Corporation and the Revson Foundation, and he served as chair of the scientific advisory board of the Ellison Medical Foundation.

Albert R. Matteson Jr., M.D. ’44, died on October 10 in Indianapolis. He was 87. Matteson served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, completed a residency in otolaryngology at Roosevelt Hospital in New York City and began a practice in Danville, Ill. He retired in 1997.

William F. McKeon, M.P.H. ’82, died on December 4 in West Springfield, Mass. Born in 1933, McKeon received his medical degree from the New York College of Medicine before serving as a medical officer in the U.S. Navy. He then practiced urology in Norwich, Conn., for 20 years. After receiving his M.P.H., McKeon pursued a second career in public health, working as The Monsanto Company’s medical director in Springfield, Mass.

James W. Needham, M.D. ’48, HS ’51, died on November 16 in Los Angeles. He was 81. From 1951 to 1955 Needham was a flight surgeon in the U.S. Air Force. He started a practice in Van Nuys, Calif., and joined the faculty at the University of California, Los Angeles. He was a consultant for the March of Dimes and a fellow of the American Geriatrics Society.

Elizabeth D. Robinton, Ph.D. ’50, died on January 9 in Lenox, Mass. She was 97. A microbiologist with a strong interest in public health, Robinton earned her bachelor’s degree at Columbia University’s Teachers College and went on to complete a master’s at Smith College. She worked at the Kentucky State Public Health Laboratories and the Connecticut Public Health Laboratory, in Hartford, before beginning an academic career in 1944 teaching biology at Smith College. After receiving her doctorate in public health in 1950 from Yale, Robinton became tenured in 1954, and in 1967 became the first chair of Smith’s new department of biological science. In 1994, as professor emeritus, Robinton was awarded Smith’s Charis Medal “in recognition of academic excellence, loyalty and commitment to teaching and students.”

Joseph Ross, M.D. ’62, died on December 27 at his home in Wayland, Mass. A psychiatrist for more than 30 years, Ross was a Woodrow Wilson fellow while earning a master’s in philosophy at Yale’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. After attaining his medical degree and completing a residency in psychiatry at University Hospital in Boston, he served as a lieutenant commander with the U.S. Navy at Quantico, Va., where he provided psychiatric care for servicemen and servicewomen and their families. He served as assistant director and then director of Trinity Mental Health Center in Framingham, Mass., and was on the medical staff at MetroWest Medical Center, formerly Framingham Union Hospital. Ross maintained a private practice in Natick, Mass., for more than 20 years and served for more than 25 years as a psychiatric consultant for St. Patrick’s Manor, a retirement community in Framingham.

Edwin J. Scott, M.D. ’42, died on February 10 in Hawthorne, N.Y. He was 91. Scott served as a medical technician during World War II, stationed in England, France and Iceland and at Walter Reed General Hospital. In 1948 he became an editorial artist at the Sunday Mirror Magazine for King Features and was later named art director in the promotion department.

Richmond W. Smith Jr., M.D. ’42, died on December 1 in Camden, Maine. He was 90. Smith served for three years as a medical officer in the U.S. Navy during World War II, serving in the battle of Leyte Gulf and early phases of the assault on Okinawa. After the war he completed his residency and a research fellowship at New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center. After the war he returned to Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, where he had done his internship. While there he established the Division of Endocrinology and became chair of medicine, publishing articles on obesity research. He also conducted research into osteoporosis and made the first appraisal of the social and economic importance of the disease in the 1960s.

Hilliard Spitz, M.D. ’43, died on December 13 in New London, Conn. He was 90. After his graduation Spitz interned at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. He then joined the U.S. Navy, serving as a medical officer at the time of the Normandy invasion in 1944. He also served in the Pacific. In 1948 he returned to New London, his hometown, and started a practice in internal medicine. In 1976 and 1977 he served as president of the Connecticut State Medical Society.

Robert W. Wroblewski, M.D. ’58, died on December 16. He was 78. Wroblewski began his career as a general surgeon in 1963 in Akron, Ohio. After additional training he switched to oncology and oncological surgery, completing a two-year fellowship in oncology at the Boston University Medical Center in 1974. He was chief of oncology at Akron General Medical Center, director of oncology at Medina Community Hospital in Medina, Ohio, and cancer program director at Good Samaritan Hospital in Vincennes, Ind.

Send obituary notices to Claire M. Bessinger, Yale Medicine Publications, 1 Church Street, Suite 300, New Haven, CT 06510, or via e-mail to

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