In Memoriam

Joost J. Oppenheim

AAI extends condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Joost J. Oppenheim, M.D. DFAAI (AAI ’68), a renowned immunologist and dedicated AAI member of over five decades who died on May 14. Dr. Oppenheim was senior investigator and head of the Cellular Immunology Section in the Cancer Innovation Laboratory at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), NIH.

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Matthew F. Mescher

AAI extends condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Matthew F. Mescher, Ph.D. (AAI ‘79), an active and dedicated AAI member for over four decades who died on December 21. Dr. Mescher was an emeritus professor of the University of Minnesota (UMN) Medical School where he was a faculty member for 22 years. He held an endowed professorship in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology and was the founding director of the UMN Center for Immunology.

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Christine A. Biron

AAI extends condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Christine A. Biron, Ph.D., DFAAI (AAI ’84), a devoted and active AAI member of 37 years who died unexpectedly on October 16. Dr. Biron was the Esther Elizabeth Brintzenhoff Professor of Medical Science at Brown University, where she had also served as director of the Pathobiology Graduate Program and later as chair of the Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology. Biron was elected in 2021 as a Distinguished Fellow of AAI, one of the highest honors bestowed by AAI. This honor recognizes active, long-term members for distinguished careers and outstanding scientific contributions as well as their service to AAI and the immunology community.

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Thomas A. Waldmann

AAI extends condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Thomas A. Waldmann, M.D., AAI '71, a renowned immunologist at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for more than six decades, who died on September 25. Dr. Waldmann was a distinguished investigator and chief emeritus of the Lymphoid Malignancies Branch of the National Cancer Institute, NIH. He served as chief of the branch from 1971 (when it was known as the Metabolism Branch) until 2019.

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Frank W. Fitch

AAI extends sincere condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Frank W. Fitch, M.D., Ph.D., DFAAI (AAI ’61), who died peacefully on April 2 at the age of 91. Dr. Fitch served as AAI President from 1992 to 1993 and was on the AAI Council from 1987 to 1994. Following this service, he was chair of the AAI Publications Committee and then served as editor-in-chief of The Journal of Immunology from 1997 to 2002. Dr. Fitch also served as the 1993–1994 president of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) and as a FASEB board member from 1991 to 1994.

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Nilabh Shastri

AAI extends sincere condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of John Hopkins University Professor of Pathology and of Biology and Bloomberg Distinguished Professor Nilabh Shastri, M.Sc., Ph.D., DFAAI (AAI ’95), who died on January 22, 2021. Dr. Shastri was a pioneer in the area of immune surveillance, exploring the molecular mechanisms behind T-cell activation. His research has had a major impact on our understanding of the mechanisms underlying antigen processing and presentation as well as related fields. Read more ►

Wendy L. Havran

AAI extends condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of Wendy L. Havran, Ph.D., DFAAI (AAI ’85), a professor and associate dean of graduate studies at Scripps Research, who died on January 20th in San Diego following a brief illness. Dr. Havran was widely known for her groundbreaking immunology research revealing important mechanisms involved in wound healing, her commitment to mentoring the next generation of scientists, and her dedicated service to the profession through volunteer leadership on AAI committees. She was selected to present one of this year’s AAI Distinguished Lectures at IMMUNOLOGY2020™ in Hawaii. Read more ►

Kimishige Ishizaka

Renowned immunologist and past AAI president Kimishige Ishizaka, M.D., Ph.D. (AAI ’58) died on July 6, 2018. Dr. Ishizaka, the 1984–1985 AAI president who served on the AAI Council from 1979 to 1986, was the long-time president and scientific director of the La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology (LJI). The following remembrance was authored by Mitchell Kronenberg, Ph.D., (AAI ’84), LJI president and chief executive officer, and Gina Kirchweger, LJI chief communications officer. AAI gratefully acknowledges the submission. Read more ►

Harald von Boehmer

AAI honorary member Harald von Boehmer, M.D. Ph.D., (AAI Hon. ’92) died on June 24, 2018. The following remembrance was authored by Ken Shortman, Ph.D., FAA, (AAI Hon. ’96), honorary professor and past head of the Immunology Division at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute in Melbourne, Australia. AAI gratefully acknowledges the submission. Read more ►

Arthur M. Dannenberg

Long-time AAI member Arthur M. Dannenberg, Jr., M.D., Ph.D. (AAI ’60), a retired Johns Hopkins University (JHU) professor and researcher, died on June 15, 2018. The following remembrance, shared within the JHU alumni community by Ellen J. MacKenzie, Ph.D., Bloomberg Distinguished Professor and dean of JHU's Bloomberg School of Public Health, is reprinted here with her kind permission. Read more ►

Thomas Ray Jerrells

Thomas Ray Jerrells, Ph.D. (AAI ’80) died on May 22, 2018, at the age of 74 after a six-year battle with frontotemporal degeneration-semantic variant (FTDsv)/primary progressive aphasia (PPA). Fellow AAI member, colleague, and friend Garnett Kelsoe, D.Sc. (AAI ’85), Department of Immunology and Human Vaccine Institute, Duke University, authored the following tribute, reflecting his remembrances and those of Dr. Jerrells’s family. AAI gratefully acknowledges the family and Dr. Kelsoe for this submission. Read more ►

Charles D. Surh

Renowned T cell immunologist Charles D. Surh, Ph.D. (AAI ’95) died in October, 2018, at the age of 56. Surh was a professor and director of the Institute for Basic Science at South Korea’s Pohang University of Science and Technology. The following tribute was authored by Surh mentor, friend, and colleague Jonathan Sprent, M.D., Ph.D. (AAI ’80); AAI gratefully acknowledges the submission. Read more ►

Maria Estela B. Roux

Argentinian biochemist, researcher, and educator Maria Estela B. Roux, Ph.D., (AAI ’82), an AAI member since 1982 and emeritus member since 2013, died on June 18, 2017. The following tribute was authored by Everly Conway de Macario, Ph.D., (AAI ’77), University of Maryland professor. AAI gratefully acknowledges the submission. Read more ►

Joy Ann Williams

National Cancer Institute (NCI) Staff Scientist Joy Ann Williams, Ph.D. (AAI ’14) died on November 18, 2016, at the age of 55 after a four-year battle with ovarian cancer. An AAI member since 2014, Dr. Williams was a frequent attendee of the AAI annual meeting, most recently in 2015. In announcing her death to colleagues, National Institute on Aging Director Richard J. Hodes (AAI ’75) shared the following tribute, reflecting his remembrances and those of Dr. Williams’ family. AAI gratefully acknowledges the family and Dr. Hodes for this submission. Read more ►

Daniel Salomon

Scripps Research Institute Professor Daniel R. Salomon, M.D. (AAI ’11), a transplant immunologist, died of colon cancer last fall at the age of 63. The following Scripps remembrance, first published on the Scripps website on November 14, 2016, appears with that institute’s kind permission. Read more ►

Henry Claman

Henry N. Claman, M.D. (AAI '65), a long-time professor of allergy and clinical immunology at the University of Colorado, died on September 3, 2016 in Denver. During his time as an AAI member, Dr. Claman served on the Education Committee, the Nominating Committee, as chair of the Awards Committee, and as a representative on the IUIS Advisory Committee. Dr. Claman was an emeritus member at the time of his death. The following tribute... Read more ►

Richard Hardy

Richard R. Hardy, Ph.D. (AAI '96), a Fox Chase Cancer Center professor and researcher, died on May 29. For the past 29 years, Hardy served as a research scientist in blood cell development and function at Fox Chase’s Institute for Cancer Research. Among his survivors is his wife, Kyoko Hayakawa, M.D., Ph.D., AAI ’96, who was his Fox Chase colleague and long-time collaborator. Read more ►

Thomas Jungi

AAI member and prominent veterinary immunologist Thomas W. Jungi, Ph.D. (AAI '79), a professor at the University of Bern, Switzerland, died earlier this year. Jungi was instrumental in developing methods to culture ruminant macrophages and in phenotyping and functionally assessing these cells, and his work illuminated important differences among the cells of rodents, humans, and ruminants. Dr. Jungi also trained numerous scientists in the areas of canine and feline immunology and contributed to colleagues’ studies in equine immunology... Read more ►

William Paul

Renowned immunologist and past AAI president William E. Paul, M.D. (AAI ’67), died on September 18, 2015. Dr. Paul was an AAI Council member 1982 – 1988, and served as AAI president from 1986 to 1987. Since 1970, Paul was chief of the Laboratory of Immunology at NIAID, NIH, where he achieved acclaim for groundbreaking work on T cell and cytokine biology, including the discovery of interleukin-4 and extensive research helping establish its role as a critical regulator of... Read more ►

J. Donald Capra

Former AAI secretary-treasurer J. Donald "Don" Capra, M.D. (AAI ’70), died on February 24, 2015, at the age of 77 following an extended illness. Dr. Capra served as secretary-treasurer on the AAI Council and chaired the AAI Finance Committee from 1997-2003. He was a recipient of the AAI Distinguished Service Award in 1993 for his service as chair of the AAI Program Committee and previously served as a member and chair of the AAI Nominating Committee and... Read more ►

Donald Metcalf

AAI honorary member Donald Metcalf, M.D. (AAI Hon. ’92), died on December 15, 2014, at the age of 85. A leading cancer researcher known as the father of modern hematology, Dr. Metcalf was a professor emeritus at Australia’s Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI). His many collaborations with immunologists over many years spurred major contributions to the field, including through his early studies on the biology of the thymus and later research on immune... Read more ►

Herman Eisen

Renowned immunologist and past AAI president Herman N. Eisen, M.D. (AAI ’51), died on November 2, 2014, at the age of 96. He was the oldest and second-longest tenured AAI member at the time of his death. An emeritus professor of biology at MIT whose active research career spanned six decades and extended to the end of his life, Eisen is perhaps best known for groundbreaking research in which he described affinity maturation... Read more ►

Ray D. Owen

Ray D. Owen, Ph.D. (AAI '66), a pioneering immunologist who was the recipient of the AAI Excellence in Mentoring Award in 1999, died on September 21, 2014, at the age of 98. Owen's 1945 discovery of immunological tolerance in twin cattle was a building block for the experimental induction of tolerance through immune suppression and for early tissue grafting, which initiated the era of organ transplantation. An emeritus professor of biology at Caltech... Read more ►

John Fahey

Prominent immunologist and longtime AAI member John L. Fahey, M.D. (AAI ’64) died on August 19, 2014, in Boulder, Colorado, at the age of 89. Fahey was renowned for fundamental contributions to research in immunology, aging, cancer, and medicine—and for his devotion to mentoring other scientists. Fahey was an emeritus professor in the departments of microbiology, immunology, and molecular genetics and of medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)... Read more ►

David W. Talmage

Past AAI president (1978-1979) David W. Talmage, M.D. (AAI '54), a distinguished professor at the University of Colorado, died on March 6, 2014. Talmage was credited with conceptualizing many central tenets of immunology, in particular those that led to the clonal selection theory. A member of the AAI Council from 1973 to 1978, Talmage was the recipient of the AAI Lifetime Achievement Award in 1994... Read more ►

Leonard Herzenberg

Longtime AAI member Leonard A. Herzenberg, Ph.D. (AAI '68), a prominent immunologist and past recipient of the AAI Lifetime Achievement Award, died on October 27, 2013, at the age of 81. His work, including the pioneering of flow cytometry and development of the first FACS cell sorters and related technology, revolutionized the field. Dr. Herzenberg served on multiple AAI committees and on the editorial board of The Journal of Immunology... Read more ►

Leo Lefrançois

AAI joined his family, friends, and colleagues in mourning the sudden loss of then-AAI Program Chair Leo Lefrançois, Jr., Ph.D. (AAI '94), who died on July 20, 2013, while vacationing in northern Italy. His death came just weeks following the culmination of his efforts as a central figure in organizing the highly successful IMMUNOLOGY 2013™ AAI Annual Meeting and Centennial Celebration held in Honolulu, Hawaii. A tribute authored by then-AAI president Marc Jenkins... Read more ►

Baruj Benacerraf

Nobel laureate (1980) and past AAI president (1973) Baruj Benacerraf, M.D. (AAI '57), died on August 2, 2011, at the age of 90. Benacerraf served as AAI president in 1973 and as a member of the AAI Council from 1968-1975. He was a member of various AAI committees, including the Committee on Public Affairs (1989-91), ad hoc Steering Committee for the International Congress (1968-69), First International Congress of Immunology Committee (1970-71)... Read more ►

Ruth Kirschstein

Fond, Admiring Remembrances Abound for Pioneering NIH Scientist and Administrator, Recipient of 2002 AAI Public Service Award In the wake of her October 2009 death, Ruth L. Kirschstein, M.D. (AAI '65), was the subject of a wide range of remembrances issuing from many corners within the scientific community and beyond. Tributes on various NIH and National Library of Medicine websites, profiles in leading newspapers and scientific publications, and... Read more ►

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