In Memoriam

Inform us of a death

Spring 2014 issue (pdf)

Alumni News accepts and publishes obituaries of Medical College of Wisconsin, Marquette School of Medicine, and Marquette University School of Medicine alumni.

Sanbo S. Sakaguchi, MD ’43, of Los Angeles, Calif., died May 24, 2013. He was 95 years old. Dr. Sakaguchi served as a captain in the U.S. Army Medical Corps during the Korean War. He later opened his own medical practice, where he saw patients until his retirement the age of 89. He was preceded in death by his wife, Kazuko.

John Brennan, MD ’46 (March), of Wauwatosa, Wis., died Jan. 12, 2014. He was 91 years old. Dr. was an obstetrician/gynecologist for more than 50 years and delivered thousands of babies, primarily at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Milwaukee. He saw patients until he was 86 years old. Dr. Brennan served as chairman of the family life committee and regional director of the National Federation of Catholic Physicians Guilds. He was named Irishman of the Year in 1967. Survivors include his wife, Joan; 11 children; 33 grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

Lawrence W. Smith, MD ’46 (November), of Racine, Wis., died Dec. 17, 2013. He was 90 years old. Dr. Smith served as a U.S. Navy seaman during World War II before attending medical school. He returned to the service as a lieutenant commander during the Korean War, then remained in the Reserves until 1984. After moving home to Racine, Dr. Smith was a private practice general surgeon and corporate medical director at S.C. Johnson and Son. He spent winters in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., following his retirement in 1986. Dr. Smith was preceded in death by his wife, Mary. He is survived by eight children and several grandchildren.

George J. Magovern, MD ’47Pioneer of the artificial heart valve dies

George J. Magovern, MD ’47, of Pittsburgh, Penn., died Nov. 4, 2013. He was 89 years old. Widely recognized as one of the country’s foremost cardiovascular surgeons, Dr. Magovern co-invented a sutureless heart valve in 1961. The device improved the survival rate from heart valve surgery from 50 percent to 90 percent. He is also recognized for performing the world’s second lung transplant and the nation’s first cardiomyoplasty procedure. He developed a prototype nuclear-powered artificial heart; a nuclear-powered pacemaker; and the Lanz Device, a high-volume, low pressure endotracheal tube. He also pioneered the use of small centrifugal pumps as ventricular assist devices and perfected reverse myocardial perfusion.

Dr. Magovern joined the staff of Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh in 1959, where he chaired the department of surgery from 1970-1994 and developed the region’s first trauma center.
Dr. Magovern also served as president of the Society of Thoracic Surgeons, editor of the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery and director of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery. He was preceded in death by his wife, Margaret, a son and a grandson. He is survived by five children and 14 grandchildren.

Clyde W. Yellick, MD ’56, of Elm Grove, Wis., died Nov. 5, 2013. He was 84 years old. Dr. Yellick, an obstetrician and gynecologist, was preceded in death by two children. Survivors include his wife, Ellie, four children and seven grandchildren.

Paul R. “Dick” Glunz, MD ’57, of Franklin, Wis., died Nov. 13 2013. He was 84 years old. Dr. Glunz served as a medic in the U.S. Navy before attending medical school. He was Chief of Liver Pathology at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology at Walter Reed Institute in Bethesda, Md. for three years, then became a founding partner in Consultants Physicians in Pathology in Beaver Dam, Wis. After retiring in 1991, Dr. Glunz served as Interim Director of Continuing Medical Education at the University of Wisconsin. He was a piano player and dog lover. He is survived by his wife, Chihaya; four children; one stepson; 11 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

John S. English, MD ’58, of Newport Coast, Calif., died Oct. 15, 2012. He was 80 years old. An otolaryngologist, Dr. English is survived by his wife, Barbara; three children; and three grandchildren.

James P. Derbin, MD ’59, of San Francisco, Calif., died July 17, 2013. He was 78 years old. Dr. Derbin served two years as a captain in the U.S. Air Force in Crete. He later accepted a psychiatric fellowship at Johns Hopkins University, then returned to the San Francisco area to open a private psychiatry practice. He also served as clinical director in community mental health for the City of San Francisco. Dr. Derbin is survived by his wife, Judy, two children and two granddaughters.

Marie Therese Southgate, MD ’60JAMA senior editor of five decades dies

Marie Therese Southgate, MD ’60, of Chicago, died Nov. 22, 2013. She was 85 years old. Dr. Southgate was the first woman to serve as senior editor at JAMA: The Journal of the American Medical Association, a position she held for nearly 50 years.

One of her responsibilities was to select all of the works of fine art on the journal’s cover and write accompanying essays about them. Dr. Southgate published three successive collections of her essays and images (The Art of JAMA) to critical acclaim.

In 2008, the American College of Physicians honored her with the Nicholas E. Davies Memorial Scholar Award for Scholar Activities in the Humanities and History of Medicine. She was chosen by the U.S. National Library of Medicine as a Local Legend. During her retirement, Dr. Southgate polished her memoirs and finished a murder mystery set in a medieval English town.

Robert J. Toohill, MD ’60, of Elm Grove, Wis., died Dec. 29, 2013, after a battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 78 years old. Dr. Toohill served as a lieutenant commander at the Chelsea Naval Hospital outside Boston, Mass., where he participated in the first-ever artificial voice box transplant. Following military service he returned to Milwaukee with his family and opened a private practice. He also joined the faculty of the Medical College of Wisconsin, first as a clinical instructor, then as full-time faculty in 1978. In 1986, he became the second-ever Chief of the Medical College’s Otolaryngology Division. Dr. Toohill grew the faculty, staff and residency program, allowing Otolaryngology and Communications Sciences to attain full departmental status at MCW in 1998. Dr. Toohill spent 25 years studying the diagnosis and treatment of gastroesophageal reflux, and was one of the first to discover that reflux of stomach acid in the esophagus can lead to vocal and sinus problems. A highly sought-after speaker and presenter, Dr. Toohill continued to conduct research and mentor students and faculty members after retiring in 2000. He was an avid golfer and fan of the Milwaukee Bucks, Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Bears. He is survived by his wife, Kathryn, five children and nine grandchildren.

Joseph Himes, MD, GME ’64, of Bayside, Wis., died Dec. 28, 2013. He was 94 years old. An anesthesiologist, Dr. Himes was preceded in death by his first wife, Sally. Survivors include his second wife, Barbara; three children; three stepchildren; and five grandchildren.

William J. Schneble, MD ’64, GME ’70, of Bellevue, Wash., died July 12, 2013. He was 74 years old. Dr. Schneble achieved the rank of captain in the U.S. Army and served as a physician in the Vietnam War. He practiced internal medicine for 43 years in Bellevue. He is survived by his wife, Nancy, five children and six grandchildren.

William W. Sheehan, MD ’64, of La Jolla, Calif, died Nov. 10, 2013, from lung cancer. He was 74 years old. Dr. Sheehan carried out research in the immunopathology of infectious diseases while a major in the U.S. Army Medical Corps. He later served as Professor of Clinical Pathology at the University of Texas/Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas. In 1981, he joined the pathology group at St. John Medical Center in Tulsa, Okla., where he practiced until his retirement in 2007. An expert in the diagnosis and classification of malignant lymphomas, Dr. Sheehan was in widespread demand as a speaker at state pathology society meetings, the American Medical Association, the American Society of Hematology and
the American Society of Clinical Pathologists. In retirement, he played golf and was a reading tutor for children and adults. Survivors include his wife, Carol, four children and three granddaughters.

Howard J. Palay, MD ’65, GME ’68, Fel ’70, of Green Bay, Wis., died Oct. 11, 2013. He was 74 years old. Dr. Palay served at the Great Lakes Naval Base Medical Center. He later opened Green Bay’s first cardiology practice, Cardiology Associates, which is now the largest group of cardiovascular specialists in the region. Dr. Palay also served as the head of the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Heart Association and established the EMS program in Northeastern Wisconsin. Dr. Palay was an honoree of the Jewish National Fund and a docent at the Holocaust Museum in Naples, Fla., where he retired in 1999. He is survived by his wife, Judith, seven children and 15 grandchildren.

Thomas J. Doyle, MD ’67, GME ’74, of Eau Claire, Wis. and Bonita Springs, Fla., died suddenly on Dec. 26, 2013. He was 72 years old. Dr. Doyle served as a general medical officer at Lowry Air Force Base in Denver, Colo., before completing urology training in 1974. He later founded Western Wisconsin Urology where he treated patients for 33 years. Dr. Doyle was an avid environmentalist, marathoner, bird lover, kayaker, golfer, traveler and skier. He is survived by his wife, Margie, four children and seven grandchildren.

Lilli Kalis, MD ’71, of San Francisco, Calif., died Oct. 25, 2013. She was 68 years old. Dr. Kalis practiced emergency medicine and urgent care. She loved the arts and was a long-time supporter of the San Francisco Opera.

Other special remembrances

Fred J. Vlazney, MD, of Huntley, Ill., died Oct. 5, 2013. He was 94 years old. Dr. Vlazney served as a physician in the Army Air Corps during World War II before settling in the Milwaukee area. He practiced for more than 30 years at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, retiring as Chief of Anesthesiology. He was an avid Chicago White Sox fan and loved to travel. Dr. Vlazney was preceded in death by his wife, Cecile. He is survived by four children, 12 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.


Comments are subject to approval. The Medical College reserves the right to edit comments for length, grammar, clarity and appropriateness.

Please include your first and last name. Alumni, please also feel free to include your class year(s). Your e-mail address will not be published.

Comments / Ratings

The following required items were not provided or are in the wrong format. Please provide the required responses and submit again:

  Please enter your name
  Please enter a valid email
Comment Title:
Comment: 550 characters left
  Please enter a comment