Classnotes - 1940s

In Memoriam

Dr. Paroski.

Jacqueline Paroski, MD ’49

—Pediatrician, teacher and trailblazer for women in medicine

Jacqueline Paroski, MD ’49, former longtime chief of pediatrics and chief of medicine at DeGraff Memorial Hospital, died October 7, 2017. She was 91.

Paroski—one of only six women in her medical school class—was a trailblazer for women in medicine throughout her career. After earning her medical degree, she moved to Washington, D.C., where she worked for the U.S. Navy as one of the first female physicians to provide care to Marines. After returning home to Buffalo, she became one of the first women to intern at Millard Fillmore Hospital.

Paroski spent most of her career in private pediatric practice. She and her husband, Paul Paroski, DDS ’45, worked in an office that was attached to their home, where they shared a waiting room. This allowed them to be home for their three children and still have robust careers.

Paroski also served as the physician for the Tonawanda School District, where she instituted sex education in the 1960s. “This was very controversial at the time, but she was determined to help assure that babies and children were well cared for and that teens had all the information they needed to lead healthy lives,” says her daughter, Elizabeth Barlog, MD ’82.

Later in her career, Paroski began teaching in the UB medical school clinic. “She loved being around the students, and because she was so intelligent and had so much experience, she had much to teach and had a lasting impact on them,” Barlog recalls.

 “She treated every patient as if he or she were her own child,” says her husband. “She used to do house calls and would even postpone vacations if someone called. She just cared and treated everyone with respect. She was strong, but got her point across without being loud or outspoken. She was extremely nice in a very genuine way.”

Paroski is survived by her husband, Paul; sister, Josephine Peters; daughter, Elizabeth Barlog, MD ’82 (Kevin Barlog, MD ’82); five grandchildren: Andrew Paroski, Jaqueline Bisbal (Max), Lauren Barlog, MD, John Barlog (Jade), Allison Barlog; and three great grandchildren. Two sons, John Paroski, MD ’80 (Margaret Paroski, MD ’80), and Paul Paroski, MD ’78, predeceased her.

Stanley J. Cyran Jr.

Stanley J. Cyran Jr., MD ’46, passed away peacefully at home with his family in Denver, CO, on September 19, 2014.

A graduate of the UB Medical School, Cyran held a certification from the American Board of Internal Medicine and was a Fellow in the American Association of Occupational Medicine. He served in the armed forces as a 1st Lieutenant Battalion Surgeon for the 26th Infantry Regimental Combat Team, and then as a captain, 98th General Hospital, infectious diseases and pediatrics.

Following his military service, Cyran practiced occupational medicine first as medical director of the Pennsylvania Railroad, Philadelphia, PA, and then as medical director of the Major Appliance Business Group, General Electric Company, Louisville, KY. He was also president of the Philadelphia Occupational Medical Association and, later, the Kentucky Occupational Medical Association.

Cyran loved to play the game of tennis, enjoyed photography, travel, choral music and cooking, and was a consummate handyman. He will be remembered for his beautiful tenor voice, a deep religious commitment, and a profound and abiding interest in people, their lives, and the world around him.

He is survived by wife Mary Ellen (nee Frank), three daughters Elizabeth Cyran MD, Carol Cyran-Samson and Katherine Cyran-Pesavento MD; and three sons, Stanley J. Cyran III, MD, John Cyran and Thomas Cyran.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Ralph T. Behling.

Ralph T. Behling MD ’43  

—Dermatologist and generous benefactor

Ralph T. Behling MD ’43, a dermatologist and generous benefactor of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the UB School of Nursing, died on December 17, 2016 in Burlingame, Calif. He was 98.

The only child of parents who owned a drugstore in Buffalo and a summer resort in Hamburg, NY, Behling grew up attending schools in both his hometown and West Palm Beach, Fla.

In 1940, he earned a BS in pharmacy at UB, and 1943 he earned an MD, after which he trained in dermatology. He was the first physician in the Buffalo area to use injected penicillin to fight infection. Following residency, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served in the Public Health Service (PHS) for four years, during which time he was awarded a $1 million grant to help introduce the Pap smear test to medical schools and hospitals west of the Mississippi. He also started trauma clinics in hospitals in five western states. His work for the PHS took him to San Francisco, Calif., where he established a private dermatology practice in San Mateo in 1947. He also taught dermatology at the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine.

Behling was a generous benefactor of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and the UB School of Nursing. He endowed the Rita M. and Ralph T. Behling, M.D., Chair in Dermatology at the medical school in memory of his first wife, who died in 1998, and supported the establishment of the Behling Simulation Center.

Behling had a tenacious work ethic, a keen interest in learning and a positive attitude, all of which enabled him to accomplish much and serve as a role model.

He is survived by his second wife, Eileen King Murray Behling; his children: James Behling, David Behling, Linda Behling Russell, Marshall Behling, Jenifer Behling; and ten grandchildren and six great grandchildren. He was predeceased by his first wife of 55 years and the mother of his children, Rita Marie Clancy Behling.

Harol Levy, MD.

Harold J. Levy, MD ’46

—Prominent psychiatrist, philanthropist, educator

Harold J. Levy, MD ’46, of Canterbury Woods, a physician leader, teacher and philanthropist, died October 2, 2019, in Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital after a short illness. He was 94.

A Buffalo native, Levy was the only child of Evelyn Sperling and Sidney H. Levy, MD, a pioneering radiologist and a 1915 graduate of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Levy graduated in UB medical school’s centennial class of 1946, becoming, at age 21, its youngest graduate and youngest inductee to the local chapter of the Alpha Omega Honor Medical Society.

Levy completed his internship, residency and fellowship at the old E.J. Meyer Memorial Hospital, now Erie County Medical Center.

Levy was certified in psychiatry by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in 1955. He was the first physician to complete a research fellowship in psychosomatic medicine at UB, reflecting a lifelong interest in the mind-body connection. In 1968, Levy was named chief of psychiatry at Millard Fillmore Hospital, a post he held for more than 30 years. He also was medical director at Bry-Lin from the 1950s through the 1980s.

For more than 50 years, Levy taught UB medical students and psychiatry residents. At the time of his death, he was emeritus clinical associate professor of psychiatry at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

A founder of the WNY Psychiatric Association, Levy was a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He was a past president and a general board member of the UB Medical Alumni Association.

After graduating from medical school, Levy donated to UB every year except for the two years he was in the Army. He chaired his medical school class reunions, including his 70th reunion in 2016. At his 65th reunion, he was presented a Medical Alumni Association Lifetime Achievement Award. The Dean’s Conference Room in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences is named for Dr. and Mrs. Levy. Levy also endowed a fund through the UB Department of Psychiatry to encourage research in psychosomatic medicine, and personally supervised residents working on such projects. In addition, he endowed an undergraduate scholarship, a lecture and conference fund in the UB Department of Jewish Thought.

Levy is survived by his wife of 61 years, Arlyne G. Levy; three sons, Sanford, Richard and Kenneth; and six grandchildren.

Herbert E. Joyce, MD ’45

—A founding father of family medicine in Buffalo

Herbert E. Joyce, MD ’45, a founding father of family medicine in Buffalo and a leading figure in the establishment of family medicine as a specialty, died October 24, 2019.

Following graduation from medical school Joyce served in the United States military, retiring in 1960 as a lieutenant colonel in the Air Force.

In 1951, Joyce founded the Highgate Medical Group, P.C., one of the largest family medical groups in New York State. In the ensuing years, he was instrumental in the early movement to promote family practice as a specialty. He and other family practitioners in Buffalo deserve much credit for the creation of the second oldest family practice residency in the United States, the Deaconess Family Practice Residency. They also are credited with establishing a Department of Family Medicine at UB, among the first of 15 university departments in the United States.

Joyce was interim chair of the UB Department of Family Medicine from 1982-1983, president of the local American Academy of General Practice from 1959-1960, and president of the New York State Chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) from 1974-1975.

In later years, he served as president of the New York State Academy of Family Physicians, and the Medical Society of the County of Erie. A community leader, he also continued to volunteer in social, medical, educational and political organizations within and outside of the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

He received numerous awards over the years, including the President’s Award in 1987 from the American Academy of Family Physicians; the Max Cheplove Medal in 1993, the highest honor awarded by the Erie County Chapter of the New York State Academy of Family Physicians; the Dean’s Award for service to the Jacobs School; and the 2009 Distinguished Medical Alumnus Award, also from the Jacobs School.

Robert Lloyd Segal, MD '47 writes, "Since for various reasons, including medical, I cannot attend my class reunion as much as I desired to be present, I though a note coverng the past 70 years would be appropriate.  After interning at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, I had a year of pathology at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, NY under George Whipple.  Instead of practicing in Westchester (my home), I opted to chance it in New York City back at Sinai. I had an appointment after residency as a half-time position as a director of a small medical emergency room for one year. After that, an appointment to the visiting staff. I ended up within thyroid group, as Associate Attending in Medicine assigned to endocrinology. After Sinai became a Medical School, I had the title of Associate Clinical Professor.  Publications included an extensive study of iodine metabolism and clinical papers on thyroid disease. I have membership in the American Thyroid Association, endocrine society and ACE. I also had privileges and attending status at Bellevue Hospital (NYU) for 3 years and Lenox Hill Hospital until the time of retirement. I retired from the practice of Medicine in December of 2010.  I was married for the first time to a Wellesley graduate, Sydney Joy Joelson, on Valentine's Day of 1954. We had 4 children.  Tragically, our youngest son David and my wife both died in a fire in a rented house in East Hampton on December 29, 1969. As a sub note, Tony Oliveri introduced a bill, now law, that all rented houses (in NY) must have functioning fire detectors.  My three older daughters have gone into education. The oldest is Head of the Upper School at a prestigious private girls school (Brearley Academy). The second is a Full Professor at Harvard Medical School. Her research at Dana Farber is on neurology and neuro-oncology. She is in charge of the MD and PhD program there. The youngest works at Hunter as Director of a Business placement group.  My second marriage produced two more daughters (total 5 daughters).  I have 12 wonderful grandchildren."

Clare Shumway, MD ’48: "A favorite memory is stopping Roger Hubbard (the absent-minded professor) in the hallway one day to ask him a question. He answered me, and then asked: 'Which direction was I headed? If it’s this way, I’ve had lunch. If it’s the other way, I haven’t eaten yet.'"