In Memoriam

Dr. Bertram Schnitzer - November 13, 2019

Dr Bertram Schnitzer, one of Michigan’s most celebrated and beloved pathologists, died yesterday at the age of 90.

Dr. Schnitzer was born June 21, 1929 in Germany. In 1941 his family emigrated to the United States. He grew up in New Jersey and received his BA from New York University in 1952. He attended medical school at the University of Basel and graduated in 1958. He completed an internship at Baltimore City Hospital from 1958-59. He did his residency in pathology at Georgetown University where he was the Chief Resident from 1961-1963 and was NCI trainee and NIH Fellow from 1963-66. He started his career in 1963 at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. He was recruited by A. James French to come to the University of Michigan in 1966. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 1970 and Professor in 1974.

Dr. Schnitzer was an internationally known leader in the fields of hematology and hematopathology. In 1976 he received the first International Giovanni di Guglielmo Prize in Hematology. He was known for his electron microscopy studies and had important publications in Science and other prestigious journals. He was President of the Society for Hematopathology in 1990. He was a prolific lecturer and gave over 140 courses, lectures, and workshops worldwide. He served on many expert review panels and editorial boards. He mentored countless residents and fellows and was always very proud of his trainees, many of whom have leadership roles throughout the country. Dr. Schnitzer worked for over 51 years at the University of Michigan before retiring in 2017. He always had a smile on his face and a cheerful attitude every day. He truly loved lymphomas and could often be found helping the faculty members with their difficult cases.

Dr. Schnitzer had many interests outside of medicine and raised three sons in Ann Arbor with his wife Anna Schnitzer. He was an avid runner and ran dozens of marathons starting in midlife. He could be found swimming at the YMCA as soon as the doors opened each morning. He loved to walk the streets of downtown Ann Arbor and frequent the coffee shops with his wife.

Dr. Schnitzer was a wonderful mentor and colleague who will be missed by his many friends within the Department and around the world.

(written by Dr. Lauren B. Smith)