Walter J. Friedlander, M.D.

FRIEDLANDER, Dr. Walter J., 1919 – 2009, age 89 years, of Omaha. Walter J. Friedlander, M.D., was born in Los Angeles, Calif., on June 6, 1919, to Jacob and Gussie Friedlander. He attended schools in Los Angeles, graduating from Fairfax High School. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, Berkeley and his medical degree from the University of California, San Francisco. Walter completed a residency in internal medicine at Mount Zion Hospital in San Francisco in 1947 and a residency in psychiatry and neurology at Cushing Veteran’s Affairs (V.A.) Hospital, Framingham, Mass., before returning to the Bay Area as staff neurologist at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in 1949. He served in the U.S. Army in 1951 as chief of neurology for the Third Army at Fort Bragg, N.C. Following his military service, he led the development of neurology services at the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland. He then served as chief of neurology at the V.A. in San Francisco; chief of Harvard University’s National Veteran’s Epilepsy Center, Boston, Mass.; and director of the EEG Center, Albany Medical College. Beginning in 1966, Walter established two departments at the University of Nebraska Medical Center – the Department of Neurology, which he chaired until 1973, and the Department of Medical Jurisprudence and Humanities, in 1980, the first to be organized in an existing college of medicine. Walter also served as chief of neurology for the V.A. Hospital in Omaha from 1966 until his retirement in 1990. Believing that access to quality health care was an essential human right, Walter brought neurological care to rural Nebraskans through clinics he helped open in Kearney and Scottsbluff, Neb. And, as part of his deep commitment to training medical professionals, Walter established the first combined residency program between the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Creighton University Medical School. He taught numerous classes to students at both UNMC and Creighton Medical schools for many years. Walter was the quintessential scholar. He wrote and published nearly 80 articles on neurology, the history of medicine and medicine in literature. In addition, he wrote three books on medical history and ethics. He brought international attention to UNMC by establishing the Clinical Neurology Information Center in 1972. The center’s publications were distributed worldwide. Walter was a modern day pioneer in the medical specialty of neurology and in the education of medical students. He received numerous awards and recognitions for his work. He was committed to helping medical students and health professionals develop a deeper respect for their patients and gain a broader understanding of medicine through ethics, history and the humanities. His enduring guidance to his family was to find ways to give back to the communities where they lived through service or support. He led by example. Walter is pre-deceased by his parents, his brother Herbert D. Friedlander, his former wife Florence Friedlander, his eldest son, John Friedlander, and his late wife Alice Friedlander. He is survived by his children Ron (Linda) Van Oeveren, Omaha; Jessie Friedlander Wuerst (Steve), Spokane, Wash.; Bert (Bobbie) Van Oeveren, La Vista; Joe (Janelle) Friedlander, Hazen ND; and Jeff (Lyn) Van Oeveren, Olathe, KS; 17 grandchildren and 18 great grandchildren. Memorials to the John Friedlander Memorial Fund at the University of Nebraska Foundation. VISITATION begins Monday, 4:00 p.m., with family receiving friends 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the West Center Chapel. SERVICES Tuesday, 10:00 a.m., West Center Chapel. Interment, Hillcrest. Luncheon reception will be held from 12:00 to 3:00 PM Tuesday at the Lower Storz Pavilion at the Clarkson Tower of the Nebraska Medical Center.

HEAFEY-HEAFEY-HOFFMANN DWORAK & CUTLER Mortuaries and Crematories 7805 West Center Road Omaha, Nebraska 68124 (402) 391-3900

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