Obituary for Richard Hyde MD
Scottsville: Richard Witherington Hyde MD died Thursday morning, October 30th, at home. He was 85. A passionate and dedicated pulmonary doctor, researcher, clinician, and teacher, Richard retired only recently when Parkinson’s disease slowed him down. He continued to read voraciously and enjoy the company of his wife, Susan, his dog, and visits from his 4 children: James, Theodore, Penelope Levine and Robert, and six grandchildren: Nina, Louis, Maxwell, Silas, Isaac, and Ryan.
Richard received his undergraduate degree from Yale University (1953) and served as a U.S. Army Sergeant (1950-52) during the Korean War, earning the nickname “Iron Jaw Hyde.” He subsequently received his medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (1957) and began a life dedicated to medicine and research at the University of Pennsylvania (1958 – 1969). Beginning in 1969, Richard continued his work in pulmonary medicine at Strong Memorial Hospital, where he served as Medical Director, Respiratory Therapy Department; Medical Director, Pulmonary Function Laboratory; and as a professor at the University of Rochester, School of Medicine. His warm and generous bedside manner made him beloved by his patients. He served as an inspirational mentor for his interns and fellows and was known for his incisive questions and gentle encouragement. As a dedicated pulmonary researcher, he published extensively.
Richard was always working, if not at the hospital then at home. With a passion for beautiful old architecture, he and his wife restored and repaired three homes over the course of their lives – an early Italianate Victorian in Philadelphia, a federal in Scottsville, and an 18th century cottage in Kittery, Maine. He loved to ski and camp, taking the whole family and dogs on white water kayaking adventures. He and his wife toured Europe three times on their tandem bicycle. Together they raised numerous litters of Labrador Retrievers and always had dogs, usually a small pack of two or three.
He was a private person, strong and determined, with an earthy sense of humor and a love of mischief. These character traits revealed themselves right up until his death as he gracefully and intelligently adapted to Parkinson’s disease. Funeral services on Friday, November 7 at 2 PM at St Paul’s Episcopal Church, 25 Westminster Rd, Rochester, NY 14607 (585) 271-2240. Memorials may be directed to Pulmonary Research Fund, University of Rochester, 601 Elmwood Avenue, PO Box 692, Rochester, NY 14642. Arrangements by J.H. Cameron Funeral Home. To leave an on-line condolence, please visit www.scottsvillefuneralhome.com.