December 16, 1911-September 20, 1992


IN BIOLOGY AND MEDICINE there are occasionally singular personalities, people who affect the lives of students, colleagues, and patients to a memorable extent. One such singular person was Leon O. Jacobson, M.D., who combined clinical practice, teaching, academic administration, and innovative investigation to make an indelible impact on hematology and on all who knew him.

Leon Orris Jacobson was born on December 16, 1911, in Sims, North Dakota, a town that exists today only in memories because the Northern Pacific railroad changed its route leaving Sims an abandoned village which now doesn't even appear on maps. He died of complications of lung cancer in Chicago on September 20, 1992, after a rich scientific and personal life. His first wife Elizabeth died in 1983, and he is survived by his second wife Elise, his son Eric, his daughter Judith Bonacker, and their children. Dr. Jacobson was known to his friends and colleagues as Jake and it is fitting to refer to him that way in this memoir.


Jake's family was made up of Norwegian immigrants, and he frequently and proudly showed his ability to speak Nor-

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