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NORTON J. GREENBERGER

NORTON J. GREENBERGER Obituary
GREENBERGER, Norton J. Physician-Educator Nortie (as he was known to all) passed away on March 21, 2020. He had recently retired as clinical professor of medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital Division of Gastroenterology. He completed an impressive career close to family after several decades in the Midwest. He was the son of the late Sam and Lillian (Frank) Greenberger, born in Cleveland, Ohio where he spent his youth. After graduating from Cleveland Heights High School, he attended Yale College, graduating in 1955. A career as a physician was always in his future. He attended and graduated from Case Western Reserve School of Medicine in 1959, where he spent three years of residency. A three-year fellowship in Gastroenterology at the Massachusetts General Hospital, 1962-1965, proved important to his future. The example, guidance and encouragement of his mentor, the late Dr. Kurt J. Isselbacher, convinced him to pursue a career in academic medicine. While in Boston, he met and married Joan Narcus, his beloved wife of 55 years. Nortie began his academic career at the Wexner School of Medicine at Ohio State University. From 1965-1972, he continued his research in gastroenterology, the liver, and the pancreas, achieved the position of Professor and became Chief of the Division of Gastroenterology. His three beautiful daughters were born in Columbus. In 1972, the family moved further west. He was appointed Chairman of the Department of Medicine at the University of Kansas, a position he held for 28 years. During that time, nearly two years of sabbatical leave in England provided time for research, writing, and great enjoyment. In 2002, he returned to Boston as Senior Physician and Distinguished Clinician at the Brigham and Women's Hospital Division of Gastroenterology, the position from which he recently retired. He considered his most important role as a clinician. The care, diagnosis and treatment of his patients gave him great satisfaction. As an educator, Dr. G trained and taught over 3,000 young physicians at the University of Kansas, many of whom he mentored. Through his lectures and writing, he reached the broader community. Nortie was also the author of over 300 articles in medical journals, the author or co-author of over 30 books, and served as editor of several journals. In addition to the academic life, Dr. Greenberger was active in and contributed to the national medical scene. He was President of the American Gastroenterology Association from 1984-1985, from which he received in 2006 the Julius K. Friedenwald Medal for lifetime contributions to the field of gastroenterology. He served as President of the American College of Physician from 1991-1992, an organization of which he was a Master. He was past President of the Association of Professors of Medicine. Judaism was an integral part of his life. Nortie enjoyed great and good wine, travel, good friends, and water-skiing at the Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri. Nortie began nearly every day jogging for at least an hour or more. He was an avid follower of college and professional sports, and had an immense reservoir of sports trivia, statistics and history. Above all, Nortie was grateful for his entire loving and devoted family. He is survived by his wife Joan, three wonderful daughters: Sharon Greenberger, Rachel Rosovsky, MD (Michael), Wendy Czarnecki (Joseph, MD); and seven amazing grandchildren: Madelyn Fried, Josie Fried, Abigail Rosovsky, Ella Rosovsky, Matthew Czarnecki, Alexander Czarnecki, and Jacob Czarnecki. Graveside service will be private. A memorial observance will be held later this year. Donations in Dr. Norton J. Greenberger's memory may be made to support Lymphoma Research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, PO Box 849168, Boston, MA 02284 or to the American Physicians Fellowship for Medicine in Israel, 2001 Beacon Street, Suite 210, Boston, MA 02135. Levine Chapels, Brookline 617-277-8300 www.LevineChapel.com
Published in The Boston Globe on Mar. 22, 2020
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