Carl N. Brownsberger M.D.
Brown & Hickey Funeral Home
36 Trapelo Road
Belmont, MA
Dr. Carl Nordyke Brownsberger MD, of Belmont, died peacefully at home on June 8th, 2021. His beloved wife of sixty-six years, the translator, Susan Brownsberger, had died in February. He is survived by his son and daughter-in-law William and Carolyn Thum Brownsberger of Belmont, his daughter Sarah Brownsberger and son-in-law Hafthor Yngvason of Bellingham, WA., his sister Mary Brownsberger Young of Frederick, MD., five granddaughters and their spouses, Solrun Hafthorsdottir of Reykjavik, Iceland, Rae Brownsberger Miller and her husband Michael Miller of Boulder, CO., Bryndis Hafthorsdottir and her husband Sverrir Kristjansson of San Francisco, CA., Carly Brownsberger McNeil and her husband Daniel McNeil of South Portland, ME., Louise Brownsberger and her partner Benjamin Soiefer of New York, NY., by four great-grandchildren, Jon Por Olafsson, Susan Klara Olafsdottir, Sonja Lilly Olafsdottir and David Miller and by his beloved sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews and cousins. Carl was born in 1930 in Kodaikanal, India where his parents Sidney and Claire Brownsberger served as medical missionaries. The family moved to Glendale, CA in 1934. After graduating from Glendale High School, Carl went on to Yale University and Harvard Medical School and served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps in Korea. In 1962, he began to practice and teach psychiatry at the University of Washington in Seattle. His wife's Boston roots tugged and in 1967, the family left the beauties of the Cascades for home turf in Watertown where several generations enjoyed close ties. Carl directed psychiatric training at Boston City Hospital and then served as Chief of Psychiatry at Newton-Wellesley Hospital from 1974-1980 before devoting his time to private practice. Carl was a generous, attentive physician with a deep compassion for all who suffer from mental illness and distress. He adopted a pragmatic approach to psychiatric care, infused with imagination and sympathy. Wit, humor and friendships sustained him through decades of hard work as did a family life that included books, chess, fun on the beach in Eastham and at his wife's instigation, ballroom dancing and tango. In retirement, Carl explored the ethics of end-of-life care and served as Medical Director at the Hospice of the Good Shepherd. He got together with friends in his "Vespers" group to discuss the Big Questions, read prodigiously and remained a beloved counselor and wise philosopher into his final days. Online guest book at
Published by The Belmont Citizen-Herald from Jun. 13 to Jun. 17, 2021.
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3 Entries
Senator Mike & Mary Rush
June 16, 2021
Howard Corwin
June 15, 2021
To the Brownsberger Family

Please accept my deepest sympathies. You are in my thoughts and prayers.


Michael Sullivan
Michael Sullivan
June 13, 2021
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