Frederic Theodore Jung, MD | JAMA | JAMA Network
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December 16, 1998

Frederic Theodore Jung, MD

JAMA. 1998;280(23):2049. doi:10.1001/jama.280.23.2049

Frederic Theodore Jung, MD, characterized by colleagues as among the last of the old-school multidisciplinary physician-scholars, died at the age of 100 on July 1 in the Chicago suburb of Evanston, Ill, where he had lived since 1938.

Dr Jung was an American Medical Association (AMA) staff member from 1946—following his retirement from the Northwestern University Medical School faculty—until his second retirement in 1963 (2 years after his wife's death) as an assistant editor of JAMA in charge of abstracts and translations. He then returned in a part-time role as consultant to the AMA's departments of health education and of magazine relations and contributing editor of the Association's (then) consumer magazine, Today's Health, until 1974. Elliott H. McCleary, Today's Health editor in the late 1960s, recalled that Dr Jung always was gracious, highly knowledgeable in medicine and many other subjects, and the classic scholarly physician of his generation.

Dr Jung's son Paul, mayor of Des Plaines, Ill—who, with 3 granddaughters and 8 great-grandchildren, survives—spoke of being "adopted at 3 days old into his [Dr Jung's] warm, nurturing, loving family. He was a gentleman—a gentle man who cared deeply about people. He was still tutoring in the Evanston public schools at 92."

As he began his 101st year in mid January, Dr Jung was still playing the piano for fellow residents of the James C. King Home, reading his journals, and enjoying intellectual discussions with visitors. JAMA and the AMA's Archives Journals sent representatives to Evanston a year earlier to document Dr Jung's 99th birthday party at the King Home.

The Wisconsin-born physician earned his bachelor's degree in chemistry at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1919; his PhD degree in physiology at the University of Chicago in 1925; and his medical degree at Northwestern University in 1932. He worked as an industrial chemist, served in the US Army, and had a 20-year medical teaching career followed by his work for the AMA. In addition to some 40 research papers, a textbook, encyclopedia, health articles for the public, JAMA editorials, and about 400 book reviews for the AMA and other publications, he wrote on a variety of nonmedical topics for the multidisciplinary, civic, honorary, and religious organizations in which he was active (and from which he earned numerous awards), particularly the Chicago Literary Club, of which he was past president.