MARJORIE JEAN SPURRIER SIRRIDGE M.D.
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MARJORIE JEAN SPURRIER SIRRIDGE M.D. Marjorie Jean Spurrier Sirridge M.D., 92, passed away peacefully in the presence of family at North Kansas City Hospital, on July 30, 2014. Cremation and private family services. Dr. Sirridge lived a highly satisfying and diverse life as a daughter, wife, mother, grandmother, friend, author, dedicated physician, teacher and mentor. The family suggests contributions to The Endowed Lectureship of Dr. Marjorie Sirridge at the Sirridge Office of Medical Humanities and Bioethics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine. Dr. Sirridge was born and raised in Kingman, Kansas, and felt that growing up in a small town provided a sense of personal freedom and helped her better understand and appreciate all kinds of people. Many of her strongest memories are linked to her life in the close knit community of her childhood years. As early as high school, Dr. Sirridge possessed a strong, natural interest in the study of science. She continued those studies at Kansas State University, graduating with a pre-medicine major at the age of 20. Medical school at the University of Kansas confirmed Dr. Sirridge's abilities in the sciences as she finished first in her class. Medical school led to another very important development: Marjorie Spurrier met her future husband, William Sir- ridge. In fact, the two were married by a special friend who was a hospital chaplain on the day before their graduation in 1944. From there, life became a little complicated because Dr. William had a residency at The Cleveland Clinic and Dr. Marjorie had an internship at Charity Hospital in New Orleans. Later, Dr. Marjorie also went to Cleveland to continue her training and start raising a family. The growing family moved back to Kansas City, Kansas, in late 1948 as Dr. William began his private practice and Dr. Marjorie found research opportunities at KU School of Medicine. During the 1950s and 1960s, in addition to raising her family, Dr. Sirridge concentrated on her medical specialty of hematology. It was a rapidly changing and exciting time scientifically as researchers were trying to find effective methods for treating blood diseases and disorders such as leukemia, hemophilia, and various types of thrombosis and anemia. She consulted at the U.S. Veteran's Hospital in Wadsworth, conducted laboratory research, and treated private patients in Kansas City, Kansas. In 1967, she published her book Laboratory Evaluation of Hemostasis and Thrombosis (later updated in two subsequent editions). Life changed significantly in 1971 when both Dr. Sirridges decided to leave private medical practice and join the faculty of the newly established University of Missouri- Kansas City School of Medicine. It was a perfect fit for them because a key component of the school's new model of medical education involved early and continuous contact between students and a team of clinician teachers called docents. Dr. Sirridge embraced this approach because she always believed that the best patient care occurs when health professionals interact frequently. Time spent with colleagues and students on the "Red Unit" produced some of Dr. Sirridge's best memories from her teaching years. While working closely with all levels of students through the docent system, Dr. Sirridge served as assistant dean and chaired the medical school's council on curriculum. She was particularly proud of the fact that the UMKC School of Medicine often held one of the highest percentages of women medical students of any coeducational medical school on the country. Finally, in 1997, Dr. Sirridge became Dean of the UMKC School of Medicine and di-rected the school for two years. Dr. Sirridge entered the medical field during a time when there were few women doctors and it was not easy to balance a career and family. Consequently, she mentored and guided many younger women as they pursued that balance in their professional lives. Without question, Dr. Sirridge found great fulfillment in being a doctor. She enjoyed the personal relationships with patients as well as the careful search for the right diagnosis. In her field of hematology, she felt fortunate to have witnessed dramatic improvements in the treatment of blood diseases like childhood leukemia. Believing deeply that it is important for doctors to have a good background and appreciation for literature, art and culture, Dr. Sirridge, along with her husband, endowed the Office of Medical Humanities at the school in 1992. In this new role, she remained active in humanities programs and co-taught courses at UMKC until her retirement at age 90. Dr. Sirridge also loved the performing arts and was an active supporter of the Kansas City Lyric Opera, Kansas City Repertory Theatre and the Kansas City Ballet. Dr. Sirridge belonged to various national, state and local medical organizations and received numerous honors and awards over her career. She was a Master of the American College of Physicians and received the Renaissance Woman Award from the Foundation for the History of Women in Medicine. In 2011, the KU School of Medicine Women in Medicine and Science Organization established the annual Excellence in Medicine award in her honor. Dr. Sirridge also was a past president of the Metropolitan Medical Society of Greater Kansas City. Besides family and her profession, Dr Sirridge's other love was reading. Rarely was she without a newspaper, periodical, medical journal or an interesting book in her hands. She organized one of the first Great Books programs in the area in the 1960s, was a member of numerous book groups (two at the time of her passing) and taught various literature-based courses at the medical school and in the Spark program at UMKC. Dr. Sirridge was preceded in death by her parents, Frank and Fannie Spurrier and her husband, William. She is survived by her brother-in- law Charles Sirridge of Tonganoxie, a daughter Dr. Mary Sirridge and her husband Dr. Eric Mack of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, a son Dr. Stephen Sirridge and his wife Linda of Lenexa, a son Patrick and his wife Christy of Leawood, a son Dr. Christopher Sirridge and his wife Lisa of Olathe. "Grandmother" Sirridge is also survived by eleven grandchildren: Joshua Mack, Dr. Rebekah Mack, Dr. Kate Sirridge, Nathaniel Sirridge, Kimberly Sirridge, Charlie Sirridge, Leigh Sirridge, Andy Sirridge, Jennifer Sirridge, Alex Sirridge and Grace Lewis. Hundreds of birthdays, holidays, and family gatherings were shared with them. Also surviving are numerous nieces and nephews. Dr. Sirridge spent many wonderful hours with her friends from the medical school, Bishop Spencer Place and cultural and book groups. The family thanks all of you for being such an important part of her life. A special note of appreciation is extended to Marilyn Pesto, Helen Gover, Nancy Cavanaugh, Dr. Judy Joss, Bette Freidberg, Mary McCamy and Dr. Judy Vogelsang. Many will recall Dr. Sirridge's fondness for the writings of Willa Cather. This was one of her favorite quotes: "What was any art but a mold to imprison for a moment the shining elusive element which is life itself- life hurrying past us and running away, too strong to stop, too sweet to lose."? Willa Cather. Online Condolences may be expressed at www.amosfamily.com. (The Amos Family Chapel of Shawnee, 913-631-5566) T


Published by Kansas City Star from Jul. 31 to Aug. 2, 2014.
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25 Entries
I was saddened when I found this obituary on the internet tonight. Mrs. Sirridge was my Girl Scout over 50 years ago. My fond memories of her encouraged me to be a Girl Scout leader to my own daughters and their classmates. Dr. Bill was my mother's doctor and my doctor after he diagnosed my Type I diabetes in 1957. I hated to see him retire from private practice, but knew he would add so much knowledge to those he taught. They have come full circle and are enjoying their reward with the Lord. Sincere sympathy to the family.
Virginia Mulik McClain
August 28, 2015
To the Sirridge Family;
I worked with both Dr. Sirridges at the University of Missouri Kansas City, while stationed at the CDC Field Station in Kansas City from 1067 to 1974. We stayed in touch until we realized that we had not received a Christmas Card from her this year. That prompted a look on google. Both Bill and Marjorie were excellent physicians, scientists, and teachers. We will all miss them.

Dr. and Mrs. Glyn G. Caldwell MD
January 5, 2015
My deep condolences to the family of Dr. Sirridge, she was such a gentle soul, I am so glad I had a chance to know her…
Jamilia Fields
August 5, 2014
Chris and family, am so sorry to see this. I didn't know her just what you had told us. I know you will miss her, but she is still around you.
Wanda Sanborn
August 2, 2014
Dr. Marjorie Sirridge was my first role model as a female physician. She exemplified many outstanding qualities. What I remember most is the way she shared her love and "art" of practicing medicine. This remains with me today. Her earthly being is gone but her legacy will continue for generations. My thanks to the Sirridge family for sharing her with us.
Francina Hoffman,MD UMKC SOM '83
August 2, 2014
Dear Linda and Steve,
Our thoughts are with you and we are sorry for your loss.
Rich and Pat Sabath
August 1, 2014
My parents, Bill and Barbara Burns, respected and loved your parents. Seldom do we witness a couple who excels in their personal and professional lives.Your parents defined a class act.Please accept our deepest sympathy from all the Burns family.
John Burns
August 1, 2014
Dr Marjorie's husband was my parents Dr for many years. Dr Bill would often come to our house. Whenever my Mother was in Providence Hospital (The Old Hospital) Dr Marjoria would often stop by to visit and no charge. The were so kind and carrying and you never felt like just a file number.I hope that the rest of the Physicans in the Sirridge family carry on the tradition. My family and I am grateful to have known them.
Dolores Bocelewatz-Hadsall
August 1, 2014
My husband Fred and I were just newlyweds in 1957 when Dr. Sirridge came into our lives. She was so thoughtful and reassuring to us, and she helped Fred fight an oh to brief battle with terminal Leukemia. These many years later, I still think of her fondly, and I will be forever grateful for the
kindness and comfort she gave us during that very diifificult time. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Yours, Deanie McCollum Wilson
August 1, 2014
I extend my heartfelt sympathy to Pat, Steve, and Chris and their families. I was fortunate to hear your mother speak on several occasions and will always remember her knowledge and gracious demeanor.
Roger Williams
August 1, 2014
Memories of Dr Marjorie include her care of my father back in the 80's and our many short chats in the SOM. She and Dr Bill were always so kind to both Charlie and I. Great lady - leaves a legacy of kindness, love and education.
Carol (Spiker) Carter and Charlie Carter
August 1, 2014
She was a great mentor.
Lisa Martin Hawver MD UMKC 2001
August 1, 2014
I was so sad to read about your Mother's death. She was an exceptional woman who raised exceptional children. I will always be glad to have had her in my life-even for a brief period of time. How lucky you all are to have had her for so long. I hope you will find comfort in all your very best memories of her. Love to you all,
Gina Bikales
July 31, 2014
I saw my first play when visiting one summer in my teen years at her house. She shared such a love of life, art and music with me as a young country cousin. She was a gracious lady. I was so impressed by her beautiful long hair (privileged to see her comb it prior to putting it up) I told Mom I was going to have long hair like Marjorie's when I grew up. It was a privilege to know her.
Brenda Parks
July 31, 2014
Dr. Marjorie will be truly missed. Marjorie and her husband Bill were mentors for all of us early med students at UMKC. As a team, they were able to instill confidence and the knowledge that hard work would lead to success in medicine and life. I enjoyed our last meeting earlier this month discussing poetry, medical school politics and her forthright views - I was fortunate to have known such a great woman.
Marc Taormina MD
July 31, 2014
Our condolences and sympathies to the Sirridge family. We will keep you in our thoughts and prayers.
Dennis & Lea Cromwell
July 31, 2014
As one of the eight women selected for that first class of 36 to the UMKC School of Medicine in 1971, I saw Dr. Marjorie Sirridge as a pillar of strength for us as we entered a male-dominated profession. Dr. Sirridge was a Renaissance woman whose energy for teaching medicine has created two generations of physicians who approach the patient with a balance of knowledge, empathy, and ethical grounding. I am forever grateful to her for visiting my sister, Dr. Barbara Allphin, also a member of that 1971 class, as she neared death from cancer a decade ago. Barb adored her and so did I.
Patricia Hubbell M.D.
July 31, 2014
Very fond memories of time spent with Aunt Marge and Uncle Bill and my cousins. She was always so gracious, and as I remember a really great cook. My thoughts and prayers with Mary, Steve, Pat and Chris and their families. Your mom was dearly loved by many and will be greatly missed.
Jerry Parks
July 31, 2014
Pat, I recently saw your mother at Bishop Spencer Place. She seemed well and I was surprised to read of her passing. My best to your family. Jan Marcason
July 31, 2014
Simply put, one of the greatest women I have ever known. When I served as Patient Advocate at TMC she was one of my allies. She had a way of seeing straight to the heart--in all senses of the word--of a matter.
Sharon Gibson
July 31, 2014
I first met Dr Marjorie when she hired me to work for her on the Red Unit at UMKC School of Medicine in 1976. I enjoyed seeing Dr William stopping in to see Dr Marjorie on the Red Unit. Seeing Chris come by to see his mom while he was a medical student. Dr Marjorie and I have remained friends all of these years and I will miss our visits via email, the many times she has been my medical consultant, and our periodic lunch and dinner visits prior to her illness. My condolences to her family. She was the most wonderful down to earth person I have ever met. Anna Lou Taney (Ann to her)
July 31, 2014
I will be forever grateful to Marjorie. In 1956 when my twin sons were being born, she assisted in the complex delivery and helped save the day (my wife was very ill). Marjorie was an amazing person that so many people remember daily as she made such a wonderful impact on all her patients lives......my condolences to her family
Merrill Athon M.D.
July 31, 2014
It has been my privilege to be a friend to the Sirridge family. Mrs. Sirridge made me feel like one of the clan and my sincerest condolences to all the family.
O. W. Hutton
July 31, 2014
Marjorie will be greatly missed. She was such a amazing woman and I am thankful to have known her.
Love and condolences to her family.
Christy Sirridge
July 31, 2014
Dr. Marjorie was truly a legend. She was an inspiration to so many of us as a physician, teacher, and mentor---but mostly as a human being. She was the faculty sponsor in helping me found the UMKC Medical School branch of the American Medical Women's Association. I got to know her intelligence, wisdom, and sense of humor on our China trip in 1976 (I became an "adopted" member of her Red Team, due to her inspiration). My deepest condolences to her family and to all of us for our loss.
Sandy Katz, M.D., J.D.
July 31, 2014
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