More Memories of Daniel N. Brown’32

The article by Mrs. Cynthia Brown Lloyd (Fall 2012 issue) about her father, the late Daniel N. Brown’32, led to my recall of many warm memories.

Dr. Brown’s Mount Kisco Medical Group invited my fourth-year P&S class to a Saturday outing at a Bedford, N.Y., country club and an evening discussion about multi-specialty group medicine. I was impressed, and in 1961, with four others, I founded the Katonah Medical Group in the village adjacent to Mount Kisco. Dr. Brown couldn’t have been nicer, or more helpful, to me, a young internist starting a group that would be competing with his. On several occasions he met with me at 7 p.m., or so, after he completed a long day’s work, and he insisted that his group’s business manager give me hours of help too. After my retirement, my former group merged with the Mount Kisco group in 2007.

Dan knew that the first requirement of effective patient care is caring and that the first rule of medicine, as Dr. Loeb taught, is “the Golden Rule.” Careful, knowledgeable, ethical medicine was the hallmark of Dan’s group, and he was known, affectionately, by his associates as “the Pope” for his encouragement that they practice medicine as he did. I have never met a finer physician, or person, than Dan Brown.

James W. Hanway’54
Hillsborough, N.C.

Another Sports (Medicine) Legend

Congratulations. Our alumni magazine just keeps getting better and better! The new format is excellent and the content is terrific. In the Fall 2012 issue author Michael Bradley hit one out of the park with his article on sports medicine, but I am afraid he didn’t touch all the bases while doing his home run trot. As a proud member of the Class of 1966, I would like to call to your attention the distinguished career of our classmate, and my old friend, Barton Nisonson, director of the prestigious sports medicine program at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, who was not mentioned in the article. Let me take this opportunity to correct the oversight.

Bart is a true-blue son of Columbia, having performed his undergraduate work at Columbia College, his medical studies at P&S, and his surgery and orthopedic training at Presbyterian Hospital. At the college, while excelling academically, Bart captained the Ivy League championship fencing team and was an individual National Champion and an All-American. At P&S Bart risked life and limb playing with the medical school contingent on the Old Blue Rugby team. As a sports medicine specialist at Lenox Hill in New York, Bart was for a number of years the orthopedic surgeon for the NY Jets. After that he was team physician for the NY Rangers for many years, including their Stanley Cup season in 1994. In addition to his research and teaching, Bart has cared for, and operated on, many top-drawer athletes over the years, as well as any number of weekend warriors and duffers of all stripes.

These days, in addition to supervising the sports medicine fellowship, Bart continues to practice at Lenox Hill, and he continues to be an active, loyal, and devoted alumnus. I’m sure you will agree that his achievements have contributed to the legacy of P&S that Columbia Medicine celebrates.

David Angstreich’66
Berlin, Vt.

Bassett Memories

Dr. Davis’ project to write a history of “Bassett” Hospital should be an interesting read for those of us who journeyed to Cooperstown during our third year at P&S.

It was early summer back in 1953 when I began a surgical “externship” in that bucolic setting—a lazy village, scenic surroundings with a lake and good people.

Excitement came early during my only ambulance ride. The young driver had siren sounding as we rapidly sped down country lanes to pick up a farmer injured weeks earlier but in need of the left leg cast change! It was a nice outing, with some “bare knuckle” moments.

Unfortunately I was “on call” late in July when major league baseball players were inducted into the Hall of Fame. There were eight being honored, including Dizzy Dean, the outstanding pitcher of the St. Louis Cardinals.

The satisfaction of working in Bassett, in a rural setting, remained with me and later, in 1958, my wife and I moved, along with our first son, to Nassawadox, Va., a village of 600 folks. Located at the bottom of the Delmarva Peninsula, with the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Chesapeake Bay to the west, it was an area rich in seafood, tomatoes, potatoes, and, again, good people. The Chamber of Commerce called it “The Land of Pleasant Living” and so it was, except for the night calls!

The 90-bed hospital was aging, and so were the two internists in charge. We stayed for 50 years; busy, yes, but plenty of time for sailing, fishing, and pickin’ blue crabs.

William F. Bernart’54
Raleigh, N.C. 

The story about Bassett (Fall 2012 issue) brought back our two months there in the summer of 1969. It was blissful. And then came August, back in NYC for a rotation at St. Luke’s—hot and sweaty and we couldn’t even get away to Woodstock!

Our experience at Bassett led my wife and me to apply for rotating internships at the three Mary’s (Bassett, Fletcher, and Hitchcock hospitals) among others. We ended up at Hitchcock and often wonder how different our lives would be had we matched elsewhere.

We also enjoyed reading about our classmates Bill Tansey (“Reality Medicine for the Teen Set”) and Barry Massie (Class Notes). We got a kick out of Bill’s use of current technology and appreciated Barry’s quote concerning the VA as an example of a single payer system.

Candace’70 and Ted Walworth’70
Lewiston, Maine

P&S Pride

Thank you so much for your feature on the cardiac classroom at Liberty Science Center (P&S News, Fall 2012 issue). Perhaps some of your readers will connect the inspirational power of mentorship with Peter Carmel’s comment about the emerging workforce shortage in medicine.

I have always been proud to have had the luxury of medical education at Columbia P&S. The school continues to enjoy a reputation for emphasizing the humanistic side of the profession as was demonstrated in your feature about the Cooperstown connection. This theme makes me especially personally proud to have been included in the alumni magazine.

William Tansey’70
Via email

PhD Pride

I attended the College of Physicians & Surgeons from 1936 to 1940 and received a PhD in biochemistry in 1940. I have received P&S [magazine] for many years and have read much of the journal for those years.

In my time at P&S there were many distinguished scientists and students who became famous in their own time. None of these, Hans Clarke, O. Wintersteiner, E. Chargaff, R. Schoenheimer, M. Heidelberger, E. Kabat, D. Shemin, DeWitt Stetten, etc., are ever mentioned. Nor is there a PhD on your editorial board. Why does your otherwise carefully constructed journal omit such references? Certainly the Columbia University medical school teaches basic science and conducts research in this area of medicine with a carefully recruited faculty. Can you inform me of your policy?

Seymour S. Cohen’40
Retired American Cancer Society 
Research Professor
Woods Hole, Mass.

Editor’s response: Dr. Cohen is correct. We did not have any faculty or alumni with PhDs on our editorial board. We have rectified that with the addition of Sankar Ghosh, PhD, chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology. We also asked Joanne Berdebes, P&S associate vice dean for research, to join the board to keep us informed of research.



Your last issue (Fall 2012) was wonderful.

It keeps one on the “cutting edge” of research going on at Columbia University, as well as at other institutions.

I continue to read the Columbia Medicine journal from cover to cover, and enjoy it very much.

Keep up your good work.

Stanley Edelman, MD
Class Chair 1953



The 2012 P&S annual report research section, “Getting Personal with Stem Cells,” described the work New York Stem Cell Foundation scientists published, in collaboration with Columbia researchers, that created personalized stem cells programmed to recapitulate the genetic code of an individual patient. The research, reported in the journal Nature in October 2011, was led and conducted by New York Stem Cell Foundation scientists Dieter Egli, PhD, and Scott Noggle, PhD. The research was conducted in the New York Stem Cell Foundation Laboratory but because of an editing error, the annual report article left the impression that Drs. Egli and Noggle conducted the research at Columbia instead of in collaboration with Columbia. Columbia Medicine regrets the missed opportunity to acknowledge the leadership role of Drs. Egli and Noggle and the New York Stem Cell Foundation in this research finding, which Time magazine called the No. 1 medical breakthrough of 2011.