Dr. Gerald Abrams 1932 - 2017

By Charles Parkos | October 9 2017

It is with sadness that we report the death of our colleague and friend, Dr. Gerald Abrams.

Dr. Abrams graduated cum laude from University of Michigan Medical School in 1955. He continued at U-M, completing his internship and residency in Pathology, and was appointed to the faculty in 1959. Dr. Abrams left for two years of military service before returning to spend his entire career in the Department of Pathology.

As a young faculty member, Dr. Abrams focused on basic research of the biological importance of normal intestinal microflora before turning his attention to diagnostic pathology. He became an expert in both gastrointestinal and cardiovascular pathology, serving as the director of the Division of Anatomic Pathology from 1985 – 1989. Nationally, he served as the president of the Gastrointestinal Pathology Society from 1989 – 1990.

Dr. Abrams also served as the Deputy Medical Examiner of Washtenaw County from 1963 – 1996 and was involved in committees for the care and use of animals both inside and outside of U-M throughout his career.

A devoted teacher and mentor, Dr. Abrams contributed to the education of nearly 10,000 graduates of U-M Medical School and served on the Dean’s Committee on Curriculum Improvement. He was the director and a lecturer of the Mini Med School for over a decade.   Repeatedly recognized by students as an outstanding and inspirational educator, Dr. Abrams received many teaching awards in the Medical School, including the Lifetime Achievement Award in Medical Education in 2002. The Medical School’s West Lecture Hall, located in Medical Science II, is named after him.

In 2014, the Department of Pathology established the Gerald D. Abrams Collegiate Professorship through donations made by former medical students and residents in honor of his teaching career.  

We send our sincere condolences to Dr. Abrams’ wife of 63 years, Gloria Abrams, and their daughters Kathryn and Nancy.  Dr. Abrams’ funeral will be held on Tuesday, October 10 at 12:00 p.m. at Beth Israel Congregation in Ann Arbor. Interment in Beth Israel Memorial Garden at Arborcrest Memorial Park will follow. Friends are welcome to visit with the family during shiva on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. at the residence of Marilyn and Martin Lindenaur, 2228 Belmont, Ann Arbor, MI 48104.

More information can be found at The Ira Kaufman Chapel.