MARSHALL B. BLOCK

Marshall B. Block, MD, passed away Thursday, Dec. 16, after a 15-year battle with chronic lymphocytic leukemia He was 78. He is survived by his loving wife, Dale; three children, Lisa (Roy) Allyson (Randy) and Eric (Barbara); and six grandchildren, Levi, Benjamin, Dandara, Zaiya, Jonah and Ella; and sister, Phyllis Engler. He was a dedicated father to his children and grandchildren and strove to help them prosper in their own worlds’ of endeavor, be it law, art or business. He was a caring and dedicated physician, researcher and educator, who over 25 years as editor in chief of Arizona Medicine, wrote over 200 editorials trying to promote better health care. He developed the first American Diabetes Association certified outpatient facility in Arizona for the care of patients with diabetes, and in so doing, helped train many diabetes educators, who ultimately took positions throughout Arizona, expanding the care given to patients with this disorder. He established the Mary L Wilson Clinical Research Center at the bequest of a patient, which helped to develop new therapies for patients with multiple kinds of metabolic disorders. As a researcher, early in his career, he helped develop the C-Peptide assay, which is still in use today to assess insulin secretory activity. It has led to a better understanding of the natural history of diabetes and helped to develop better treatment strategies for these patients.

His greatest passion was to be creative and provocative whether it was in creating art, in telling jokes, in general discourse or being on the golf course. He tried to look at things differently in order to open peoples’ minds to new ideas and thoughts. His passion for golf late in life was not to be competitive and wager money but rather to be creative and see it as a challenge to adapt to. It was, he said, “like practicing medicine; each hole was like a new patient which had to be analyzed and understood in order to successfully navigate it. Even playing the same hole over and over again was like seeing the same patient on return as things changed between visits ( the pin was in a different position or the wind was blowing). The challenges never ceased from day to day.”

He had a very productive life filled with many wonderful memories from around the world to those closest to home. He will be missed by the many who knew him as a friend, as a physician and as a husband, father and grandfather.

Donations in his memory can be made to Dr. Jennifer Brown's Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia Research Fund at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA 02284.