Dr. Laurence Alan “Larry” Boxer, a pediatric hematologist and oncologist, loving husband, father, grandfather and loyal friend, passed away Jan. 7, 2017, at University of Michigan Hospital. Dr. Boxer, who was 76, died of myeloma.
The service was held Jan. 11 at Temple Beth Emeth in Ann Arbor, Mich. Interment followed at Arborcrest Memorial Park. Feldman Mortuary made the local arrangements.
“Larry was passionate about medicine and history,” the family said. “He was a wonderful colleague and mentor, and was loyal to both his adored Stanford Cardinals and Michigan Wolverines.
“Even more than his professional accomplishments, Larry will be remembered for his witty humor, endless supply of jokes and his kind and gentle nature.”
Dr. Boxer was born in Denver to the late Sam and Tillie Boxer. He grew up surrounded by a large and loving extended family.
A proud “East Angel,” he graduated from East Denver High, earned a BA magna cum laude from CU and his MD from the Stanford University School of Medicine.
Dr. Boxer completed his pediatric residency at Yale University, where he met his future wife Grace, a medical student; and at Stanford. He did his pediatric hematology/oncology fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital of Harvard Medical School, which appointed him an instructor in pediatrics.
He married Grace on Aug. 23, 1969, at her parents’ home in Brawley, Calif.
While Dr. Boxer was a major in the US Army at Tripler General Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii, 1969-72, he and Grace studied the history of Hawaii and explored all the islands.
He also served in the leprosy colony at Kalaupapa on the island of Molokai.
Dr. Boxer joined the pediatrics department at the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis in 1975 and ultimately became a professor.
In 1982, he joined the University of Michigan Medical School as professor and director of the division of pediatric-hematology oncology.
He became the inaugural Henry and Mala Dorfman Family Professor of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology in 2003.
Dr. Boxer’s academic interest in the study of neutrophils and disorders of neutrophil biology led to multiple advances in the diagnosis, care and treatment of patients with defective neutrophil function following cancer therapy.
He held leadership positions with the American Society of Hematology, American Society for Clinical Investigation, Assn. of American Physicians, American Clinical and Climatological Assn., Society for Pediatric Research and the American Society of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology.
Dr. Boxer received the George Norlin Distinguished Alumni Award from CU and the J. E. Wallace Sterling Outstanding Medical Alumnus Award from Stanford.
The University of Michigan established the Laurence A. Boxer MD Research Chair of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases in 2010.
Dr. Boxer is survived by Dr. Grace Boxer, his wife of 47 years; son David Ernest Keoni Boxer (Emily Maureen Benz); grandchildren Hugo Samuel Benz Boxer and Olympia Grace Ann Boxer; brother Michael Keith (the late Kathy) Boxer; and brother-in-law Richard Charles (the late Carol Jane) Jordison.
Contributions may be made to the University of Michigan, Laurence A. Boxer MD and Grace Jordison Boxer MD Lectureship in Hematology and Related Blood Diseases, 1000 Oakbrook, Suite 100, attn. Mike Hartwell, Ann Arbor, MI 48104.
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