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In Memoriam: Winter 2006

LEO FUNG, M.D., Excelsior, Minnesota, died December 10, 2005, at age 42. He was chief of pediatric urology at the University of Minnesota Medical School and one of the world’s leading authorities on the surgical restoration of obstructed urinary passages, a potentially life-threatening condition in children.

He pioneered laparoscopic surgical techniques used in the reimplantation of ureters in children and other critical surgical reconstructions. At the time of his death, he was investigating the use of stem cells to restore genital and urinary tissue in children.

“Dr. Fung was a rising star in the field of pediatric urology,” says Jon Pryor, M.D., chair of the Department of Urologic Surgery.

His colleague, John Schreiber, M.D., agrees. “He was the quintessential academic surgeon,” says Schreiber, who is chair of the Department of Pediatrics.

“He will be sorely missed by the medical community.”

Fung is survived by his wife, Cathy, and three young children in addition to his parents, a brother, and a sister.


WILLIAM KRIVIT, M.D., Ph.D., Arden Hills, Minnesota, died December 8, 2005, at age 80. Dr. Krivit was an emeritus professor and former chair of the Department of Pediatrics who began his career at the University of Minnesota in 1951. In 1974 he and colleagues Mark Nesbit, M.D., and John Kersey, M.D., developed the University of Minnesota Blood and Marrow Pediatric Transplant program—one of the nation’s first pediatric transplant programs. Dr. Krivit was also a pioneer in the treatment of childhood metabolic storage diseases such as ALD, MLD, and Hurler’s syndrome.

Dr. Krivit earned his M.D. from Tulane University in 1948 and his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota in 1958. During his career, he trained more than 75 fellows and published more than 400 manuscripts. He officially retired from the faculty in 1999, but actively consulted on cases until weeks before his death.

He is survived by his wife, Chyrrel, four children, and four grandchildren.


MANSUR TAUFIC, M.D., Austin, Minnesota, died November 16, 2005, at age 90. Dr. Taufic was part of the team that performed the world’s first successful open-heart surgery at the University of Minnesota in September, 1952. That historic operation was led by F. John Lewis, M.D., Ph.D., and assisted by C. Walton Lillehei, M.D., Ph.D., and Richard L. Varco, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Taufic’s main contribution was the development of a technique used to cool the patient’s body temperature long enough to open the heart and operate.

Dr. Taufic served in World War II as a surgeon for the Brazilian army. Following his service, he completed his surgical residency at the University of Minnesota Medical School. He went on to open a surgery practice in Austin, Minnesota, where he worked for 30 years until his retirement in 1998. He also developed a technique for successfully completing more than 900 cholecystectomies, or surgical excisions of the gallbladder. In 2002 he received the Surgical Alumnus of the Year award from the Department of Surgery.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Marjorie. He is survived by his son and four brothers.


LEON L. ADCOCK, M.D., Class of 1946, St. Paul, died November 21, 2005, at age 82. Dr. Adcock specialized in obstetrics and gynecology and was a faculty member in the University of Minnesota’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology from 1962 to 1995. During this time he played a key role in ensuring the continuation of the department’s annual autumn seminar, an event that brings together women’s health professionals to discuss trends and issues in their field. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Madeline, and daughter, Leslie. He is survived by his second wife, Marian, a daughter, and two stepdaughters.


CARL L. BIORN, M.D., Class of 1938, Palo Alto, California, died March 28, 2005, at age 91. He served in the U.S. army medical corps during World War II and later became the first full-time urologist at the Palo Alto Medical Clinic, where he worked for 38 years. Dr. Biorn was also a professor of surgery at Stanford University and served as president of the California Urological Association from 1988 to 1990. He is survived by his wife, Helen, and five children.


JOHN M. DOLAN, Ph.D., Minneapolis, died September 14, 2005, at age 68. A medical ethicist, Dr. Dolan was a professor of philosophy at the University of Minnesota and cofounder of the University’s Program in Human Rights and Medicine. He received the Morse-Amoco Award for distinguished contributions to undergraduate teaching and was a member of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers. In May 2005, the John M. Dolan Professorship was established to honor his contributions to his field. He is survived by his wife, Rosemary, and two children.


JOHN R. GATES, M.D., Class of 1976, North Oaks, Minnesota, died September 28, 2005, at age 54. A pioneer in treatments for epilepsy and other neurological disorders, Dr. Gates cofounded the Minnesota Epilepsy Group in St. Paul, which evolved into a world-renowned, comprehensive epilepsy treatment center. Shortly before his death, the American Epilepsy Society awarded him the J. Kiffin Penry Award for Excellence in Epilepsy Care. He is survived by his wife, Rita Meyer, and three children.


GEORGE B. GORDON, M.D., Class of 1946, Saratoga, California, died July 15, 2005, at age 81. Dr. Gordon practiced internal medicine at O’Connor Hospital in San Jose, California until 2004. He is survived by his wife, Therese, and two children.


LUCILLE J. HOILUND, M.D., Class of 1948, New Brighton, Minnesota, died September 10, 2005, at age 91. Dr. Hoilund was director of the University of Minnesota School of Medical Technology and a registered medical technologist with the American Society of Clinical Pathologists.


DAVID R. JOHNSON, M.D., Class of 1945, Minneapolis, died November 4, 2005, at age 83. Dr. Johnson served in the navy during World War II. He went on to practice neurosurgery in Missoula, Montana, and at various hospitals in Minneapolis. He is survived by his wife, Cordelia, and five children.


WENDLA E. LEINONEN, M.D., Class of 1953, Anoka, Minnesota, died in August, 2005, at age 77. Dr. Leinonen practiced medicine at the University of Minnesota Health Service for 30 years and was in private practice in the Minnesota communities of Wadena, Fridley, and Anoka. She was also a charter member of Mercy Hospital in Coon Rapids, Minnesota. She is survived by her husband, Neil Macheledt, M.D., and eight children.


MERLE K. LOKEN, M.D., Ph.D., Class of 1962, Buffalo, Minnesota, died August 20, 2005, at age 81. Dr. Loken served in the military during World War II and the Korean War. An expert in radiology and nuclear medicine, he was a professor at the University of Minnesota, where he served as director of the Division of Nuclear Medicine from 1963 to 1987. He also helped develop the Positron Emission Topography (PET) program at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska, and held international appointments in India, Japan, and Germany. He is survived by his wife, Fern, and six children.


DONALD M. MAYBERG, M.D., Class of 1952, Minneapolis, died September 25, 2005, at age 80. Dr. Mayberg served as a fighter pilot in World War II and as a flight surgeon during the Korean War. Following his service, he became a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Minnesota Medical School and president of the Minnesota Psychiatric Society. He also helped start psychiatric units in several Twin Cities hospitals and served as director of psychiatric education and training at Abbott-Northwestern Hospital. In 2001 he was recognized as one of the nation’s best psychiatric physicians in the publication Best Doctors. He is survived by his wife, Betty, and eight children.


JAMES S. ROBERTSON, M.D., Ph.D., Class of 1944, Gaithersburg, Maryland, died in July, 2005. Dr. Robertson served as a navy medical officer during World War II. Following his service, he conducted research at the Brookhaven National Laboratory, practiced medicine at the Mayo Clinic from 1975 to 1983, and served as director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Human Health and Assessments Division.


MARY A. SCHERMANN, M.D., Class of 1980, Council Bluffs, Iowa, died June 23, 2005, at age 52. She worked for Ridge Family Practice in Council Bluffs and was an assistant clinical professor at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska.


S. H. TSAI, M.D., Edina, Minnesota, died August 27, 2005, at age 86. An authority on tuberculosis and chest radiology, Dr. Tsai was an associate professor of radiology and director of the radiology residency program at the University of Minnesota. During his career, he was also a senior staff physician at the Glen Lake Sanatorium in Minnetonka; on the radiology staff at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center; and head of the radiology department at Hennepin County Medical Center. He was preceded in death by his wife, Yukee. He is survived by two children and three grandchildren.


HARRY A. WILMER, M.D., Ph.D., Class of 1940, Salado, Texas, died March 13, 2005, at age 88. Dr. Wilmer served as a navy captain from 1955 to 1957. He was a staff member at the Mayo Clinic and a professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University; the University of California, San Francisco; and the University of Texas, San Antonio. He also founded the Institute for Humanities in Salado, Texas. He is survived by his wife, Jane, and five children.

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