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In memoriam: Frank Riddick, Jr., MD.

The Journal and the state of Louisiana have lost a friend, and an extraordinary physician, leader, and gentleman, with the passing of Frank Riddick, Jr., MD on October 28, 2014 at the age of 85.

A native of Memphis, Tennessee, Dr. Riddick received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Vanderbilt University and did his post-graduate training in internal medicine and endocrinology at the Barnes Hospital-Washington University complex in St. Louis. He joined the Ochsner Clinic in 1961 and spent his entire career there.

Most of us were told as we began our medical training that the ideal physician achieves excellence in patient care, teaching, and medical scholarship. Few of us become highly successful in all three areas. Frank Riddick, however, exceeded these criteria of excellence. First, he was a superb internist and endocrinologist, and the Riddick Diabetes Institute at Ochsner is testament to his skill and dedication. Second, he was an excellent teacher of medicine to students, resident physicians, and senior physicians alike, and he was a Professor of Clinical Medicine at the Tulane University School of Medicine. Third, he was a true medical scholar authoring 27 books and book chapters and 100 articles on endocrinology, medical ethics, and healthcare policy. He was on the editorial board of this journal and always provided thoughtful and incisive reviews.

In addition to fulfilling these three criteria for medical excellence, Frank Riddick served in many management roles over a 26-year period, and at the time of his death was Chief Executive Officer Emeritus of the Ochsner Health System. He oversaw phenomenal growth at Ochsner and led its expansion not only beyond the Jefferson Highway campus, but also into primary care medicine. After Alton Ochsner, Sr., Frank Riddick arguably has been the most important and influential Ochsner physician.

Frank Riddick's talents were quickly recognized, and he received myriad honors, served on many boards, and was a member and officer of numerous august organizations, medical and otherwise. I was always impressed by the quiet and unassuming way he went about important business, his unstinting willingness to serve varied worthy causes, and his consistently kind and gentlemanly demeanor.

D. Luke Glancy, MD, Editor

Frank Riddick was unique and will be missed by many. The Journal sends its condolences to his wife, Mary Belle, and their three children and eight grandchildren.

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Author:Glancy, D. Luke
Publication:The Journal of the Louisiana State Medical Society
Article Type:In memoriam
Date:Jan 1, 2015
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