We have been notified of the passing of Society Fellows:
Michael Broniatowski, MD FACS, a Triological Society Fellow since 1988, passed away on September 30, 2021.
Dr. Broniatowski’s obituary can be found here.
Sharon Grundfest-Broniatowski, MD FACS, shared the following tribute (some of which was written by Michael before he died):
Michael Broniatowski, a proud member of the Triological Society, passed away on September 30, 2021, in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. He was born in Maidstone, England, on December 25, 1944, where his parents were involved in the war effort. After his father’s discharge from the French Section of the US Office of War Information and the British Army, the family returned to Paris. Michael received his Baccalaureat after attending the Experimental Science section at the prestigious Lycee Henri IV, followed by studies at Paris University School of Medicine, graduating with honors in 1969. After service in the French Army as a Lieutenant taking care of road casualties, and later as Captain in the reserves, he completed otolaryngology training at the hospitals of St Germain en Laye and Foch in Paris and received Specialty Certification in Otolaryngology in 1974. He was in practice until 1976 when he immigrated to the United States and was accepted in the Otolaryngology training program at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. In 1977, he met Dr. Sharon Grundfest, a lovely pianist and general surgery resident at the Cleveland Clinic, who would become his wife and research collaborator. After American board certification in otolaryngology, he became an Assistant Professor on the full-time faculty at University Hospitals, the VA Medical Center, and MetroHealth. He then did a special fellowship and research in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic in association with Dr. Harvey Tucker and Dr. Yukihiko Nose, chairman of the Department of Artificial and Internal Organs. He returned to the faculty at CWRU, before becoming chairman in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the St Vincent Charity Hospital where he served for 27 years. During that time, he continued to combine patient care with research in neuro-restoration for paralyzed structures in the head and neck as an Associate Clinical Professor at Case, Adjunct Staff at The Cleveland Clinic, and Clinical Professor of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery with The Ohio State University. He resigned due to illness in 2013, but continued part-time with MetroHealth Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery until he retired in 2019. He published prolifically – over 100 scientific and clinical papers, editorials, movies and book chapters – and presented nationally and internationally. He enjoyed teaching residents and did not shy from brainstorming with his colleagues. He was blessed to remain in touch with close friends, some for more than 50 years. He had a keen interest in history, music, and dynasties of Lhasa Apso dogs. He had a dry sense of humor and was widely travelled. He is survived by Sharon, the love of his life, as well as their two sons, Daniel (Holly) from Boston, and David (Rebecca) from Washington DC, 5 grandchildren, Noah, Jacob, Arielle, Elaine and Judah, and cousins on both sides of the pond.
Thomas C. Calcaterra, MD FACS, a Triological Society Fellow since 1979 and 1996 Western Section Vice President, passed away on September 27, 2021.
Dr. Calcaterra’s obituary can be found here
C. Phillip Daspit, MD FACS, a Triological Society Fellow since 1994 and 2004 Western Section Vice President, passed away on March 26, 2022.
Dr. John House shared the following tribute:
Phil was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on Sept. 5, 1943. He attended LSU-Baton Rouge, graduating in 1965. Medical school was also at LSU-New Orleans, graduating in 1968. He was an active-duty flight surgeon in the Navy from 1969-1972 and stayed on in the active reserve, retiring as a Captain. Following his active-duty military service he completed his residency at University of California, San Francisco. Phil completed a fellowship in Otology-Neurotology at House Ear Clinic in 1978. Following fellowship, he went into practice in Phoenix, affiliated with Barrow Neurologic Institute, St. Joseph’s Medical Center, and Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Dr. Daspit served as the Western Section Vice President in 2004 as well as several program committees. He was an esteemed member of the American Otological Society, serving on the AOS Council as the Editor-Librarian for 5 years and then as President in 2011. He was a Fellow member of the American Neurotology Society for almost 50 years, inducted in 1973. Other memberships Phil was very proud of were the Triological Society, American College of Surgeons, the Otosclerosis Study Group and the AAO-HNS/F to name a few. Phil published more than 20 scientific papers. We will all miss Phil.
Herbert H. Dedo, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1970, passed away on August 5, 2021.
We are sad to report the news of Dr. Herb Dedo’s passing on August 5, 2021. Dr. Dedo, born in 1933, was 88 years of age. We are honored to have had Dr. Dedo as a Triological Fellow for 51 years. He was elected to Triological Fellowship in 1970 and received the Harris P. Mosher Award for his thesis, “The Paralyzed Larynx: An Electromyographic Study in Dogs and Humans”.
Thank you to Dr. Andrew Murr who shared with us a bit of Dr. Dedo’s life history:
Herb was an inveterate innovator and tinkerer who was a renowned laryngologist and head and neck surgeon. He was responsible for many new techniques and many instrument iterations which made the practice of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery more facile. He was a pioneer in adapting the laser to be of precise utility in the difficult to access regions of the airway. He was an early fellowship trained head and neck oncologic surgeon having spent time in St. Louis at Washington University with Joseph Ogura, MD who himself was a graduate of UCSF. It was Frank Sooy, MD who gave Herb his first job as an academic otolaryngologist here at UCSF in 1966.
Dr. Dedo spent the vast majority of his academic career at UCSF. He was a character and was opinionated, but he was always willing to help in difficult clinical situations and had viewpoints based upon vast clinical experience. Dr. Dedo published a truly elegant surgical atlas called Surgery of the Larynx and Trachea in 1990 that exquisitely outlined his painstaking surgical approaches. This was in addition to many papers, presentations, chapters, and speaking engagements. When Herb was in the operating room at UCSF, he often hosted visiting surgeons from around the world. He was a true pioneer in the treatment of laryngeal dystonias, laryngeal paralysis, and also was a surgeon who was in the forefront of managing recurrent respiratory papillomatosis and laryngeal and tracheal stenosis. Multiple generations of UCSF OHNS surgeons and students could recite Herb’s approaches to clinical problems by heart.
On a personal level, Herb had many outside interests. He loved opera and enjoyed introducing others to SF Opera. He was a member of the Bohemian Club. He enjoyed reading history books, was fascinated by airplanes (especially World War II fighter aircraft), and also was a sailor. Herb is survived by his wife, Sigrid Homs Dedo. His son, Bill, is a physician in Lafayette, LA.
Below are some career highlights for Herb:
University of California, Berkeley Class of 1954
University of California, San Francisco Class of 1958
University of California, San Francisco intern in surgery and resident in otolaryngology, 1959-1963
NIH fellowship at Washington University in St. Louis with Joseph Ogura, MD followed by a year with Dr. Erich Dunker in Hamburg, Germany
Assistant, Associate, and Professor of Otolaryngology at UCSF 1966-2010
Member, American Laryngological Association
Fellow, The Triological Society
Harris P. Mosher Award for his Triological Thesis, 1970
Over 200 invited lectures and honorific presentations
For those who wish to send condolences to his wife, Sigrid Dedo’s address is 1802 Floribunda Ave., Hillsborough, CA 94010
Jacob Friedberg, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1993, passed away on December 5, 2021.
Dr. Blake Papsin, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, shared the following tribute:
Jacob Friedberg was born in Toronto in 1937, the eldest of three brothers, to a recently immigrated and close family. Life in Toronto was serious, and Jacob developed his straightforward approach to life in these years. As a teenager he met Lilly and married early in his 20’s. They remained married for 59 years and had 4 children. As a trainee I remember he and Lilly holding hands at social functions always. They remained deeply in love.
Getting into medicine was a difficult task in those days because of quotas. Jacob, however, was an exceptional student and took the most difficult courses in chemistry, physiology and biochemistry and received top marks. His summer work involved classified projects in chemical warfare and an often talked about job in a vestibular laboratory looking into the effects of weightlessness. As a result of his undeniably exceptional performance as a student, he was accepted into the University of Toronto and was subsequently followed into medicine by both of his younger brothers who incidentally and to his dismay, both predeceased him. Again, overcoming long odds, he was admitted into Otolaryngology within our Faculty of Medicine and never left us until now.
He started in a private practice on Avenue Road just north of Yorkville with two colleagues who would become lifelong friends, Drs. Arnold Noyek and Jerry Chapnick. He always remembered this period of his career most fondly because he was free to care for patients, teach and continue learning without the administrative yolk associated with a more formal academic practice. He started the fellowship preparation course for residents which still exists today! He was highly respected within Otolaryngologic Society.
Eventually he and his partners were able to join teaching hospitals and Jacob ended up at The Hospital for Sick Children where he would spend the entirety of his career. Although he performed all otolaryngologic procedures, he focussed on diseases of the ear and became one of the first subspecialized otologists in pediatrics. He wrote his Triologic Thesis on congenital cholesteatoma which cemented him within academia as a leader in pediatric otology which is of course why I became his student and colleague and he became my hero.
Fellowship in the Triological Society is voluntary and requires writing a thesis which if accepted, grants you membership. Jack was naturally drawn to the academic challenge and proudly inspired every current member of our department to eventually write a thesis. He led that way. Quietly, strongly and by example. He was also deeply involved in the Society for the Ear Nose and Throat Advances in Children (SENTAC) and he won several of this Society’s awards and was its President in the late 1990’s putting SickKids on the International map. He was the Otolaryngologist-in-Chief at SickKids in the early 2000’s and remained closely associated with our department right until the pandemic kept us apart.
Jack loved the outdoors, music, reading and his family. He was a learned man with extensive knowledge of astronomy, physics, construction and engineering. He also was a devoted gun owner and taught gun safety professionally. He felt defense of one’s freedom from persecution was a personal responsibility. He kept several firearms throughout his life but had never aimed one aggressively. Around him, whether there was a firearm available or not, one felt safe, protected and free. Most of all he was a loyal man so after gaining his protection it was yours for life……I can still feel it.
Dr. Friedberg’s obituary is available here.
William M. Gatti, MD FACS, a Triological Society Fellow since 1980, passed away on January 8, 2022.
Dr. Gatti’s obituary is available here.
Arthur J. Kuhn, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1966, passed away on December 11, 2021.
Dr. Kuhn’s obituary is available here.
Louis D. Lowry, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1981, passed away on December 26, 2021.
Dr. Lowry’s obituary is available here.
John H. Per-Lee, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1973, passed away on April 24, 2022.
Dr. Per-Lee’s obituary is available here.
Thanks to N. Wendell Todd, MD MPH for providing the following tribute: John Per-Lee died on April 24, 2022 in Atlanta. He was 92 years of age. Survivors include his wife of 64 years, Dorothy (Dot), four children, six grandchildren, and four great grandchildren. Following college at Dartmouth, he completed medical school at Cornell. His otolaryngology residency was at New York Hospital. After serving in the Navy, he completed a NIH sponsored fellowship in otology at the University of Southern California: he was thereby a quite early House fellow. Dr. Per-Lee then came to Atlanta to cofound the otolaryngology practice at Emory University. For more than 34 years he trained residents and students. He was delighted and honored by his Triological Society fellowship. His thesis was about bioglass for obliterating the mastoid in cats. Many otolaryngologists best remember his eponymous wide flange long-term tube for middle ear ventilation. John was the quintessential teacher, mentor, friend and colleague. His gentleness, kindness, guidance and influence continue with us.
James Byron Snow Jr., MD FACS, a Triological Society Fellow since 1968 and 1986 Eastern Section Vice President, passed away on May 28, 2022.
Dr. Snow’s obituary is available here.
Thanks to P. Ashley Wackym, MD, for providing the following tribute: I am sorry to inform you that Jim Snow recently passed away. Jim, as you would expect, wrote most of his own obituary and asked his son James B. Snow, III to contact me to help the family edit the final obituary. He was a remarkable individual whose life and career were so impactful. Editing three editions of Ballenger’s Otorhinolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery with Jim was such an amazing education and experience for me. He taught me so much about editing and served a friend, mentor and father figure for me. Jim was one of the most detailed oriented people that I have ever met, was incredibly precise in all that he did and seemed so formal at all times. What we did not appreciate until we truly got to know him was how warm and caring he was, that he enjoyed a hearty laugh and had an excellent sense of humor, gave freely of his time and enjoyed an outstanding meal accompanied by cocktails and shared with friends and colleagues. He loved his wife Sallie so much that it was palpable whenever he mentioned her or when speaking with them at meetings. He was a fine person. I am certain that Jim played a role in many of your careers and that you you have fond memories of him. The Triological Society was so very important to Jim and he always looked forward to the annual meetings and the interactions with our colleagues as well as the scientific content presented. Jim will be mourned by us all.
Ronald L. Steenerson, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 2020, passed away on May 2, 2022.
Thanks to N. Wendell Todd, MD MPH for providing the following obituary:
Dr. Ronald Leif Steenerson died peacefully May 2nd, in the care of his wife and two daughters. He was nearly 84 years old. Dr. Steenerson graduated from Angola High School in 1956. He then spent 4 years at Purdue University and four years at the Indiana University School of Medicine, where he earned his medical degree in 1964. He liked to tell anyone who would listen he completed his medical school obstetrics rotation at the same hospital in which he was born. It was in medical school where he met his best friends he would stay in touch with until the end of his life. Following medical school, Dr. Steenerson spent two years in the Air Force as a flight surgeon during the Vietnam War. He then completed an ENT residency at the University of California, Los Angeles and Veterans Administration. Following residency, he first practiced general ENT in Los Angeles with Dr. Richard Barton and and then private practice in Bakersfield, CA. From 1977 to 1978, Dr. Steenerson completed a fellowship in neurotology under the mentorship of Dr. Michael Glasscock in Nashville, TN. He completed an international fellowship with Ugo Fisch in Switzerland. Following fellowship, he practiced with Dr. Thomas Balkany in Denver, Colorado from 1984 to 1987. In 1987, he moved to Atlanta, Georgia, where he practiced neurotology until 2019, when he retired from surgery and from medicine. He published and presented more than 75 peer reviewed papers, countless talks and courses. He was inducted to the Triological Society and American Neurotology Society. Dr. Steenerson was among the first in Georgia to perform the cochlear implantation surgery, bringing hearing to over 700 patients over his career. He was the first in Georgia to open a Vestibular and Balance Clinic treating over 40,000 patients, restoring balance, hearing and quality of life for so many. Throughout his long career, he remained deeply passionate about the practice of medicine, publishing discoveries and discussing cases with awe and relish long after his last day in the office. Dr. Steenerson’s life was punctuated by many major milestones, but to remember his life only through the lens of these major accomplishments is to miss a core part of what drew people to Ron Steenerson. Beyond even his intelligence, his drive, and his career success, one of Ron’s greatest gifts was deep, unabashed, playful delight in the small moments of life. Ron exuded a youthful joy and an unmatched dry wit. Ron was a licensed pilot, marathoner, hiker, accomplished marksman, golfer and cyclist. Above all other hobbies, fly fishing was his passion. He fished throughout the world, but could not find a finer place to fish than the storied rivers of Montana. His passion was so great, he ventured into the world of architecture to build his own log cabin in Montana to serve as his base camp for fly fishing. He never stopped appreciating the glint of sunlight off a Montana river as he cast his line. He never tired of watching one of his long line of dogs run free in the Montana brush. He savored a good story, a good dry fly, a good bowl of ice cream, a good medical case, and a good joke, the drier the better. Ron knew he was lucky. His grandparents fled poverty and starvation in Norway and Europe to build a successful life in America, and he saw their success and built upon it without forgetting how fortunate he was. His mother, who was a nurse in the War and the Great Depression instilled in him the importance of gratitude and charity to those in need. He was grateful in all he did and felt lucky to have met Linda – who he thought he was simply hiring to decorate his office, but ended up becoming his partner of 42 years and ushering him into the roles of husband and father. Perhaps his greatest surprise and delight was how much he loved being a father. His daughters meant more than the world to him and he did everything possible to make sure they were provided for, loved and supported. To hear him describe his daughters’ mischief and triumphs is to know how much he cherished this precious role. Ron leaves behind his wife, Linda, and his daughters Kristen and Lauren, as well as many grateful patients, inspiring colleagues, loyal friends and doting pets. He will be sorely missed by all. As a modest man, Ron preferred no memorial service. In lieu of flowers, he requested contributions be made to Doctors Without Borders or a charity of choice if, in his words, “[people] feel like they have to do something.”
Roger E. Wehrs, MD, a Triological Society Fellow since 1975 and 1990 Middle Section Vice President, passed away on December 28, 2021.
Dr. Wehrs’ obituary can be found here.