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Obituary
April 2006

David M. Kozart, MD (1938-2005)

Arch Ophthalmol. 2006;124(4):613. doi:10.1001/archopht.124.4.613

On March 16, 2005, Scheie Eye Institute, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, lost a treasured colleague and beloved friend, David M. Kozart, MD, to leukemia. Dr Kozart was a distinguished member of the Department of Ophthalmology faculty since 1970. He received his bachelor's degree in 1960 from Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pa, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 1964, he received his MD degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Following an internship at Philadelphia General Hospital, Philadelphia, he completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute of Ophthalmology, Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, New Milford, Conn, under the tutelage of the late George Smelser, PhD. He then completed a residency in ophthalmology at the University of Pennsylvania. He joined the University of Pennsylvania faculty in 1970 as assistant professor of ophthalmology and was promoted to associate professor in 1979. In 1990, he served as acting chair of the Department of Ophthalmology, and in 1995, he was appointed vice chair for administration.

David M. Kozart, MD

David M. Kozart, MD

During Dr Kozart's long and illustrious career as a member of the medical faculty, he held many important positions in the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and at the Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, Philadelphia. Among these were serving as vice chair of the Medical Legal Committee at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, chair of the Internal Residency Review Committee at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, president of the medical staff at the Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, and chair of the Medical Faculty Senate. He also served on the Committee on Academic Freedom and Responsibility as well as the search committee for the chair of the Department of Anesthesia at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

Dr Kozart developed an enormous practice in comprehensive ophthalmology, and he was revered by his patients, admired by his residents, and held in great esteem by his colleagues. The faculty and residents at the Scheie Eye Institute looked forward to his enthusiastic participation each week in Ophthalmology Grand Rounds and were always astonished by the breadth and depth of his knowledge. He never let a questionable statement go unchallenged, and his penetrating questions were always intended to bring out the best in the resident reporting the case. Dr Jay Moolchandani, a former Scheie Eye Institute resident, fondly remembers Dr Kozart's intervention on a difficult case in the operating room where a patient's iris kept pooching out of the wound:

Dr Kozart stepped in and showed me what I have named the “Kozart maneuver,” a technique of pressing on the posterior lip and letting out some aqueous rather than trying to push in the iris. In the last 16 years, several of my patients have benefited from the Kozart maneuver.

Since Dr Kozart's death, tributes from patients, colleagues, and former students and residents from all over the country have been received. At his family's request, the David M. Kozart Memorial Fund has been established at the Scheie Eye Institute. Dr Kozart's colleagues at Penn Presbyterian Medical Center voted unanimously to establish an annual award, the David Kozart Humanitarian Service Award, that will be given to a member of the medical staff who embodies Dr Kozart's attributes and commitment to excellence in patient care and good citizenship.

Dr Kozart married his wife, Elizabeth, in 1962. They eventually established a home in West Mount Airy, Philadelphia, where they reared 3 children, Michael, Deborah, and Marjorie. A fervent handyman, he excelled in making furniture, turning out pieces of his own design for his children and eventually for his 4 grandchildren, Freddy and Sophia Ludtke and Anna and Thea Volpp. He also enjoyed gardening, classical music, opera, and books. In addition to his wife, children, and grandchildren, he is survived by his sister, Anne Karmatz, his sons-in-law, Fred Ludtke and Kevin Volpp, and his daughter-in-law, Mary Barsony.

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Correspondence: Dr Fine, Scheie Eye Institute, University of Pennsylvania, 51 N 39th St, Philadelphia, PA 19104-2689 (stuart.fine@uphs.upenn.edu).

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