PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Michael Gary Ehrlich, M.D., a pioneering and beloved orthopedic surgeon, teacher, father and friend passed away peacefully on July 21 at his home in Providence.
Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, he was a graduate of the Bronx High School of Science and of Dartmouth College (at the age of 19), Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude. He attended medical school at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, from which he graduated Alpha Omega Alpha. After starting his career in New York City, he moved to Massachusetts in 1972 where he served as the chief of pediatric orthopedics at Massachusetts General Hospital and an associate professor at Harvard Medical School for 18 years. For the next three decades he served as the Vincent Zecchino Professor and chairman of orthopedics at Brown University and Rhode Island and Miriam Hospitals. He also served as a member of the board of trustees of the Lifespan Health System.
Over the course of his long and distinguished career, he was the recipient of countless honors and awards including the Milton W. Hamolsky, M.D. Outstanding Physician of the Year and the President’s Pursuit of Excellence Lifetime Champion Award in 2015. He recently became an Inaugural Fellow of the Orthopedic Research Society.
He was known for his tireless work ethic, signature bow ties, wry sense of humor and love of sailing. His legacy will live on through the students he mentored, the medical teaching and research facilities that bear his name and the Michael G. Ehrlich, M.D. Endowed Chair in Orthopedic Research. He will also be remembered by the thousands of patients whose lives he touched as their physician.
He was predeceased by his wife of 50 years, Nancy Band Ehrlich, who was his partner in achieving his many accomplishments. He leaves behind his two sons, Christopher and Timothy, their wives, Sara and Isabella and five grandchildren, Charlotte, August, Julian, Harrison and June. He will also be dearly missed by Suzanne Gilstein, his significant other.
The Michael G. Ehrlich, M.D. Fund for Orthopedic Research has been established to support his lifelong passion and commitment to medicine. Consider a contribution to the fund via the Rhode Island Foundation (www.rifoundation.org).