Mark Pescovitz (1955-2010)

By David Pescovitz at 9:24 AM Monday, Dec 13, 2010

Blue Depth: Catedral de sal de Zipaquira" by Mark Pescovitz

My oldest brother Mark Pescovitz died yesterday in a car accident. Mark was a true Renaissance man -- a transplant surgeon, medical researcher, fine artist, and philanthropist. Mark was a professor of microbiology/immunology and director of the transplant immunology laboratory at Indiana University School of Medicine. He didn't become a scientist when he grew up -- he was always a scientist. Mark was a maker from a very young age. He scavenged electronics by the pound and, before he was even a teenager, built a laser that he turned into an alarm system. He entered the project in a city science fair but didn't win because the judges refused to believe he made it himself. He built a chemistry lab in our basement, a darkroom in a storage closet, and a model rocket shop in our attic. Inspired by the space race, Mark dreamed of being an astronaut, was an early member of the National Association of Rocketry, and as an adult applied to be a medical doctor aboard the space shuttle. Mark taught me why a broken TV isn't junk and how to treat sulfuric acid with respect. He gave me my first computer and a book on programming. This year, he transformed my son into a dedicated rocketeer in just one afternoon.

As a medical researcher, Mark authored several hundred scientific publications on immunology and transplantation. Most recently, he and his colleagues published a paper in the New England Journal of Medicine about a new way to slow and possibly even stop the progression of type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile-onset diabetes. In recent years, he traveled to Eldorat, Kenya to teach physicians there how to do their first kidney transplants. He brought his amazing wife Ora and kids Aliza, Naomi, and Ari with him, and they helped care for children in the town whose parents were suffering from AIDS. For Mark's efforts in Eldorat, the community there named him an honorary "Village Elder."

"Head Photographer (self portrait)" by Mark Pescovitz, c. 1973

Ever since he was in high school, Mark had a passion for documentary photography. As his medical research became global, Mark had many new opportunities to take pictures. He had visited more parts of the world than almost anyone I know, from Malaysia, Egypt, and Iran to China, Israel, and Turkey, to perform surgery, train doctors in remote regions, present his research, and meet with collaborators. To maintain his sanity with such a hectic travel schedule he always added an extra day whenever he visited a new place to just explore the locale on his own with his camera. He treated that day as sacred, keeping it free of commitments.

"Few would consider flying to Manila (a 15 hour non-stop flight) for a one day meeting a 'pleasure' trip," Mark once said, "but by bringing my camera and taking an extra day to wander around shooting photos, the perspective of the trip completely changes."

One of 1000+ photos from Egypt, 2008, by Mark Pescovitz

In 2008, Indiana University held an exhibition of my brother's travel photography, titled "The Unconventional Tourist." His photography also was featured in a group show at Boston's GASP experimental art gallery. Over the last few months, Mark was preparing a new series of photographs that he told me involved "collections of things." He mentioned that he had also acquired a large Van de Graaf generator for the project. I'm not sure why, but I bet he had a lot of fun with it. Mark was also a collector of fine art, finding inspiration in pieces by Chuck Close, Christo, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, and younger emerging artists.

Mark loved music, from classical to bluegrass, and at various points in his life took up violin and mandolin. He served on the board of several charity organizations and was particularly excited about helping with the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis. Mark and Ora have always been incredibly generous with their time and money, donating to many Jewish, medical, education, and art causes and making themselves available to those organizations in very real ways.

My brother embodied the Jewish concept of tikkun olam, meaning that one should live with purpose, to help heal the world. Mark did that, with joy, wit, and passion. And the world is a little better for it.

My family and I thank you all so much for your kind words and sympathy. If you would like to share your thoughts or memories below in what's become a "virtual memorial book," we'd very much appreciate it if you would sign your name to your comment. Mark's funeral was held on Thursday, December 16, 2 p.m., at Congregation Beth-El Zedeck in Indianapolis.


Dr. Ora Pescovitz, Mark's wife
Aliza Pescovitz, Mark's daughter
Ari Pescovitz, Mark's son
Naomi Pescovitz, Mark's daughter
Maxa Pescovitz, Mark's sister
Rabbi Ammiel Hirsch, Mark's brother-in-law

Please consider a donation in Mark's memory to one of the following organizations that he supported:

Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis
The Indiana University Foundation
The Indianapolis Opera
The International Violin Competition of Indianapolis
Gift of Life Foundation

429 Responses to “Mark Pescovitz (1955-2010)”

  1. seyo says:

    Oh man. I’m so sorry. My deepest condolences for your loss.

  2. WaylonWillie says:

    All of us are really sorry for your loss–I can tell you had a great brother. I’m not sure words help much at times like these, but all the BBers are thinking of you.

  3. bookninja says:

    I’m sorry for your loss, David. Your piece on him is lovely.

  4. mkultra says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Words are insufficient at times like this, but they’re all we have.

  5. Anonymous says:

    My condolences, David. Thank you for sharing the story of his remarkable life and character with us.

  6. Ceronomus says:

    I am sorry for your loss and I mourn for never having known such an exceptional man.

  7. TenInchesTaller says:

    I imagine it was hard to put this post together such a short time after his passing, but thank you so much for it. He sounds like a truly happy mutant.

  8. Cocomaan says:

    Your brother sounded like a person I’d like to have met. You did his memory great justice by writing a fine eulogy. I am sorry for your loss, and I hope that your family continues to remember his spirit and curiosity.

  9. dr.hypercube says:

    My condolences to you and to his wife and kids. A life devoted to healing, indeed.

  10. George Ruiz says:

    David, you honor his memory with your words. I am sorry for your loss and sorry we have lost such a generous soul. Prayers and thoughts for you and your family.

  11. Marilyn Terrell says:

    Oh, David, what a devastating loss, and what an extraordinary person. My condolences to you and your family. Thank you for sharing him with us.

  12. Pollyanne Faith says:

    What a beautiful and touching tribute to your brother. He sounds like an amazing person–just like you.

  13. Xeni Jardin says:

    I am so sorry for your loss, buddy. What a beautiful human being your brother was. I am so sorry.

  14. cosedcasket says:

    My heart goes out to you, David. I lost my brother a year ago, and I know it’s a special type of pain. Hang in there.

  15. Anonymous says:


    I feel humanity is tangibly worse after losing someone like your brother, not only losing an incredible pioneering mind but a tremendous heart whose willingness to share his passion with others around the world demands inspiration. I will be thinking about this for a long time to come. Very, very sorry for your and his family’s loss. Rest in peace, Dr. Pescovitz.


  16. bizzyb says:

    I’m so sorry for you loss — it sounds like he was a truly great individual who positively impacted others. The world could use more people like him, not fewer.

  17. lost feliz says:

    Touching tribute.

  18. SaulTSack says:

    My condolences. One can only hope to achieve half as much in lifetime.

  19. urbanhick says:

    My family sends our condolences out to you and yours, David. I nearly lost my oldest sister in a car accident 25 yrs ago, and my heart skipped a beat when I read the headline. Be strong, brother.

  20. Anonymous says:

    I am truly, truly sorry to hear about this. I will hold you and your family in the light as you endure this tough time. Folks like your brother make Bloomington, IN a truly amazing place to live.

  21. cinemajay says:

    So sorry to hear about your brother, he sounds like a wonderful, exuberant guy. My condolences to your whole family.

  22. Andrea James says:

    That is a very beautiful tribute that outlines the breadth of your brother’s talents and compassion. Thanks for sharing some of his cool photography and finds on BB in the past, and I am very sorry to hear about this unexpected loss. Mark’s life of purpose obviously touched many people, including those of us here.

  23. cstatman says:

    Ha-Makom yenahem etkhem b’tokh sha ar aveilei Tzion v Yerushalayim

    I am sorry for your loss, and condolences.

  24. vanyelgh says:

    I am so sorry for you and the family’s loss. He sounds like he lived up to his motto very well. He has left a lasting legacy to this world and we are all poorer for his passing.

  25. QuidiVidi says:

    My condolences.

  26. nanuq says:

    Why is it that we only ever seem to hear about these awesome people in their obituaries?

  27. glace neuf says:

    I lost my father in a car accident earlier this year (I was in the car as well) and I know how difficult it is to come to grips with a sudden, life-changing tragedy. Your brother is defined by all of the things he did when he was alive (and that you so lovingly described) and not by how he passed. I wish peace and healing to you, your family and everyone who knew your brother.

    There are over 25,000 deaths in America every year from automobile accidents. Please drive safely and with respect for all of the humanity around you.

  28. tikva says:

    David, I’m so sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family. Thank you for sharing Mark so eloquently with us. *Hugs*

  29. Anonymous says:

    What a great man, will be remembered by many Israelis who read BoingBoing and got to know him a litte by your beautiful tribute
    Sorry for your loss

  30. David Pescovitz says:

    Thank you all, so much. Your words mean a lot. He was certainly a happy mutant.

  31. Doran says:

    I am so sorry, so very sorry for your loss. Your brother will live on in your thoughts, and in the thoughts of the many people whose lives he touched.

  32. Anonymous says:

    David, I knew your brother well. We were in touch the other day, Saturday; I adored him. He was so proud of you, in fact, of his family. I will miss him profoundly. My sincere condolences to you and yours.

  33. Lobster says:

    It’s always the good ones. I’m sorry, David.

  34. dequeued says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss.
    I can’t say I know what it’s like to lose a sibling, but, I’m so sorry.

    Mark sounded awesome, Rest in Peace

  35. feralman says:

    Thank you for introducing your brother Mark to us. He seemed like a great cat, and being a type one diabetic myself, a loss with personal significance. Sorry for your loss, David.

  36. Cory Doctorow says:

    David, we’re here for you if there’s anything we can do. I’m so, so sorry for you and your family’s loss.

    Cory and Alice and Poesy

  37. MrsBug says:

    David, I’m so sorry. Please accept my deepest condolences. I can’t even imagine what it must be like to lose such a vibrant sibling.

  38. Anonymous says:

    I am very sorry for your loss. Personally, your description of Mark is incredibly inspiring. I am currently in the middle of medical school, spending countless miserable hours studying and wondering why I ever started after coming from the humanities. Mark’s life is a great reminder of the type of physician and person I hope to be and a sharp rebuttal to my accumulated cynicism. I hope that you may find comfort in knowing how many people your brother continues to impact.

  39. uricacid says:

    My condolences.

  40. David Fry says:

    I had the pleasure of dining with Mark and his wife Ora two months ago in Ann Arbor. It was clear he was a brilliant and entertaining man with a wide-ranging intellect. My wife and I were both charmed by him and the way he saw the world. Not having gotten to know him better is now our loss.

    Our thoughts go out to his family and his many friends.

  41. maitrix says:

    What a beautiful person. I am so sorry for your loss.

  42. misterjalopy says:

    Oh, David. I am so sorry for you today. I watched Mark through BB and felt I knew him, often thinking, “what doesn’t that guy do?”

    My sincerest condolences for you and your family.

  43. JeffinMontreal says:

    David, I’m so sorry for your loss, my thoughts are with you and with your brother’s family.

  44. ben_cosgrove says:

    David —

    So, so sorry to hear this … but humbled and grateful to learn of Mark’s remarkable life. Thank you for sharing that with us all. My family’s prayers and thoughts are with you and your family.


  45. pupdog says:

    David, my deepest sympathies for you and the family. Keep those memories close, he sounds like a fantastic part of the worl that will be missed.

  46. Anonymous says:

    Deepest condolences, you describe the kind of person we all strive to be.

  47. christackett says:

    Terribly sorry to hear this, David. Your post was beautiful and it sounds like he left the world a much better place. Take care.


  48. DrPretto says:

    I’m sorry for your big loss. Not only his family, but we humans lost a great man.
    My sincere condolences.

  49. arikol says:

    sincere condolences

    A man who seems to have lived his life with purpose and passion and left our world a richer place than when he arrived.

  50. fbrusca says:

    What an amazing human being. Thank you for sharing his story.

  51. arthurgoldwag says:

    David, I am so sorry to read this. What an inspiring tribute.

  52. lectroid says:

    All that AND a truly epic mustache.

    This speaks to not only a great intellect, but a charming sense of whimsy and humor.

    My sincere condolences.

  53. Cowicide says:

    I’m very sorry to hear this, but I’m also happy to know he lived a very full life.

  54. Lewis Haidt says:

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful tribute to your brother.

    I remember the posts on his photography and being struck by his talent and wide-ranging interests.

    My condolences.

  55. jjsaul says:

    Please consider, when some time has passed, expanding on this biography. I can hardly imagine living a life with a fraction of your brother’s passion, creativity, and generosity, and would appreciate learning more about how he did it.

  56. btm says:

    I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. Your profile of him was both a beautiful tribute and inspiring. Thank you for sharing it with us all. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  57. bhoyo says:

    Mark has just touched lots more people he didn’t know, thanks to your inspiring tribute.

  58. Greg323 says:

    What a wonderful tribute. My deepest condolences. The world is truly a smaller place without him in it.

  59. Bionicrat2 says:

    It is good to know such people ever existed. We need the reminder how even the best in our lives can be gone tomorrow. Thanks for sharing his story with us. My deepest sympathies for such an awful loss.

  60. Mitchmaster says:

    My sympathies to you and the rest of the family, and his friends as well. David sounds like a super-mensch. If I accomplish a tenth of what your brother has done I will consider my life well lived.

  61. floraldeoderant says:

    Condolences. He seems like a lovely man.

  62. Anonymous says:

    What an amazing man and a beautifully-written tribute to him. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  63. Gunn says:

    My condolences to you and your family, David. From your tribute, it sounds as though he had a wonderful and fulfilling life.

  64. abeanpie says:

    So sorry to hear this.
    Sounds like he did alot to repair the world and your wonderful tribute reminds me to stay mindful of my own responsibility of tikkun olam.


  65. MooseDesign says:

    He sounds like he was an incredible guy…Thank you for sharing a brief (but somehow outsized) glimpse into his life.

  66. Anonymous says:

    So very sorry to hear this, our thoughts are with you and your family. That was a very moving tribute.

  67. Anonymous says:

    May you be comforted with all who mourn. I’m sorry for your loss. Your brother sounded like he did much to heal the world.

  68. Paul Spinrad says:

    Wow David– I’m so sorry to read this, what a great older brother to look up to, and what a terrible loss for you, your family, and the world! Best wishes and condolences to you and your family, and I hope you can all spend some good time together and reconnect around this.

  69. Anonymous says:

    My deepest condolences to you and your family.

  70. Laughing Squid says:

    David, I’m so sorry to hear that. Sounds like your brother was an amazing person. Our thoughts are with you and your family.

  71. Rural Mutant says:

    My sincerest condolences for you and your family Mark.

  72. Chang says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Your brother sounds like an extraordinary human. So sorry. The world is less one amazing happy mutant and that is sad.

  73. kc0bbq says:


    So few of us seem to actually live up to our potential, it’s always that much more sad when someone who does seem to passes away. Moreso when it’s due to an accident.

    He also had a fantastic moustache. That is not the moustache of a man capable of evil. :)

  74. Waterlilygirl says:

    “People do not die for us immediately, but remain bathed in a sort of aura of life which bears no relation to true immortality but through which they continue to occupy our thoughts in the same way as when they were alive. It is as though they were traveling abroad.”
    ~Marcel Proust

    May your brother be traveling to wonderful places.

  75. THLM says:

    My deepest condolences to you and your family.

  76. eszylko says:

    May peace be with you and your family – what an inspiring person!

  77. Teller says:

    Very sad. Such a young man.

  78. mindysan33 says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this. Your brother sounded like an amazing person. Condolences to you and your family, David…

  79. Mark Frauenfelder says:

    Your brother Mark improved the lives of many people in many ways. He was a wonderful person and I know how much you loved him. Please let me know what I can do for you and your family right now.

  80. Ito Kagehisa says:

    Thank you for sharing your brother’s life with us, Pesco.

    Barukh attah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha-olam, dayan ha-emet.

  81. Anonymous says:

    seemed like a fanstastic guy. sorry for the loss.

  82. Gilbert Wham says:

    Your brother was quite clearly a mensch, by anyone’s estimate. Deepest condolences.

  83. Anonymous says:

    My deepest condolences.

  84. Tom says:

    I’m so sorry. Your account of his life is beautiful and very moving.

  85. Tavie says:

    Deepest condolences to you and your family, David. Your brother sounds like a remarkable person who truly enriched the world by being in it.

  86. IronEdithKidd says:

    David, I am deeply sorry to hear of your tragic loss. The world has lost a hero.

  87. Blue says:

    So sorry to hear this, David. My condolences to you and your family.

  88. Swizzlebat says:

    What an extraordinary person, what an amazing older brother (son, uncle, colleague, friend); what a tremendous, devastating, and cruelly random loss for the world. My deepest sympathies go out to you and your family.

  89. Anonymous says:

    David, Thank you for writing and posting this piece about Mark. I have known Mark for many years and he is an extraordinary individual. He has profoundly affected countless lives, both professionally and personally. We will miss him terribly. Our thoughts and prayers are with you, Ora, and the entire family.

  90. CamrioKid says:

    Deepest condolences. I enjoy BB as a daily diversion and was touched by the tribute to your brother. May his memory bring smiles to you and yours in this time of sorrow.

  91. capl says:

    My heart sank when I saw the headline, but was lifted up again by reading about his beautiful life, it is an immeasurable loss and my deepest sympathies go out to you.

  92. Anonymous says:

    What a wonderful post about your amazing brother. David, I’m so sorry. We’re here for you. With much love, Carla

  93. EliZ says:

    Nothing is created or destroyed: He is everywhere, now. Your beautiful brother is in and around us all, and we are all enriched by his presence.

  94. strangefriend says:

    Let me offer condolences on the death of your brother. He sounds like he was an amazing person.

  95. orwellian says:

    My condolences on your loss.

  96. Cherubini says:

    David, my most sincere condolences for your loss.

  97. Blinde Schildpad says:

    Congratulations to your brother on a life well lived. May we all merit that being said of us.

    And condolences to you and your family, David.

  98. The Life Of Bryan says:

    Sounds like he lived more life than any ten people I can think of. I hesitate to say that that makes his death more tragic than anyone else’s, but I can’t necessarily say that it doesn’t either.

  99. Mr. Customer says:

    I’m terribly sorry for your loss, David. Very fitting that his life would be memorialized here in the Directory of Wonderful Things.

  100. JIMWICh says:

    David, my deepest condolences to you and your family. Your brother was an amazing person. Peace and strength to you in this difficult time, my friend.

  101. cherry shiva says:

    deep condolences David and thanks for this moving tribute. the reference to tikkun olam is especially inspiring. my older brother was also born in 1955 and i cannot imagine the world without him. may we honor the fallen by thriving. peace love and courage.

  102. Anonymous says:

    I wish you and your family condolences.
    I thank you for reminding us what a good life is.
    We all mourn for you and your loss.

  103. Anonymous says:

    From everyone at The University of Michigan, we give our most sincere condolences on your families loss. Your family will be in our thoughts and prayers!

  104. Anonymous says:

    What a lovely tribute to an incredible person. Recalling some of the projects mentioned around the house made me smile. I am so sorry and sad for your family’s loss.

  105. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful tribute. So sorry for your loss.

  106. Crispinus211 says:


    My condolences, and thank you for sharing this beautiful remembrance.

  107. wylkyn says:

    So sorry for you and your family. Not only did you lose a beloved brother, but the world is definitely worse for the loss as well. :(

  108. putty says:

    Sounds like he was a wonderful person. Condolences to the entire Pesco family. Beautiful eulogy David.

  109. Beth says:

    Thank you for sharing this moving tribute to your brother. The world was a better place for having him in it.

  110. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for the loss of your brother.

  111. Anonymous says:

    This is a tragic, shocking loss, please accept me deepest condolence to you and your entire family. I considered him a close friend and exemplary, gifted colleague. The field of Type 1 Diabetes, one of the many fields he excelled will miss him, his vision and energy terribly.
    Tihamer Orban MD, a colleague

  112. Anonymous says:

    David I am so sorry to hear this…my sincere condolences.

  113. Anonymous says:

    Amazing guy and so thoughtful of you to share a little of his truly inspiring biography. His spirit no doubt lives on in everyone he touched.

  114. Robert says:

    My condolences and sympathies are with you. I hope his passing is accompanied by an honor guard of unicorn-riding happy mutants.

  115. Anonymous says:

    Sorry to hear about the loss of your brother. We lost my brother a few years back; he was too young and contributing greatly to the world. It’s tough to take.

  116. lolbrandon says:

    David, my condolences to you and your whole family. Mark sounds like he was an amazing person.

  117. Anonymous says:

    Sending you good thoughts David……….
    I take great comfort in knowing, with certainty, that thing that makes us special, able to enrich our own lives and those of others, will not cease when our bodies do but will be just starting a new (and hopefully even better) adventure … ”

  118. RikF says:

    So sorry for your loss. The truly good and great among us sometimes seem destined to be taken far too soon.

  119. andydub says:

    Sincere condolences to you and your family.

  120. Vanwall says:

    Sorry to hear about this, and it was nice to read such a stirring tribute to an obviously well-loved brother – my condolences.

  121. tomrigid says:

    He is survived by a very good brother. Be well.

  122. MrJM says:

    I’m sorry. Take care of yourselves.

  123. JArmstrong says:

    Sincere condolences for your family’s loss. The pictures and reflections above reveal a man who exuded mirth and care and who appreciated the beauty in life. May we all strive to do such good in the world.

  124. Anonymous says:

    Your post moved me so much, and I am humbled to read learn about such an amazing person.

  125. Anonymous says:

    Very sorry for your loss as well as the world’s loss of someone who did so much good. My condolences.

  126. Kayjayoh says:

    My thoughts are with you and your family.

  127. Grognard says:

    I’m very sorry for your loss.

  128. heypal says:

    What a blessing to have had the love of a brother such as yours in your life. Truly, his life and legacy are things to celebrate. Let this tragedy be a reminder of the beauty of life and how the the thing that lasts is the love. You have that.

  129. user23 says:

    May your brother go on to enjoy the rewards of his next great adventure.

    May you and your family be well.

    It sounds like we all lost a fine mind and great spirit.

  130. bklynchris says:

    Dear David, I do not know you but want you to know how heart broken I am for your, and society’s for that matter, loss. What a wonderful man he was. It is a tragedy that he was taken so abruptly. Again, I do not know you but my thoughts are with you, the rest of his family, his friends, and all of his patients that he has saved and was yet to save.

    Tomrigid said it all. He is survived by a very good brother. Be well.

  131. Aaaa says:

    I’m very sorry for your loss.

  132. Anonymous says:

    I am sorry for your loss. I met your brother in the early 2000’s when I was a resident in training. I spent time on the transplant service at Indiana University with him. He was a brilliant person and extremely generous with his time.

  133. NJ says:

    Reading the bio, I was reminded of my own youth before things were messed up.
    I learned how lasers worked before I was 12 because of an older brother took the time to explain them, I was interested in rocketry and physics because of people who cared. I identify with the person in the bio above. And I’m very sorry for your loss.

  134. mdh says:

    A moving obituary, I am sorry to heay about your loss David.

  135. NJ says:

    Reading the bio, I was reminded of my own youth before things were messed up.
    I learned how lasers worked before I was 12 because of an older brother took the time to explain them, I was interested in rocketry and physics because of people who cared. I identify with the person in the bio above. And I’m very sorry for your loss.

  136. mtellers says:

    Thank you for sharing his story with us. My condolences on your loss, and the loss of the world in general. It seems like he was an amazing, inspiring person.

  137. Anonymous says:

    Dear David,
    I am the Executive Director of Indianapolis Opera of which Mark has been a long-time board member. Along with Ora and family, their involvement with us has been for many years and always, always a true delight.
    It is with a heavy heart that I send my condolences to you. Mark’s death is a huge loss to all of us in Indiana. Mark truly is an example of a “life well lived” — well lived but far too short!

    You all are in our thoughts as we take stock in how fleeting life is,

    John C. Pickett

  138. Anonymous says:

    What a fascinating and inspiring man. Talk about getting the most out of life.

    I’m sorry for your loss.

  139. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for your loss.I grew up down the street from you guys in Cincy and always admired your brother.My brother Dave was Mark’s classmate at Walnut and I know that Mark’s scientific exploits in your house that were witnessed by Dave helped inspire him to go on to become a Cardiologist. I am sure many other people were influenced by Mark’s passion for all he did in his too short life.
    Fred Weiland

  140. David Pescovitz says:

    Thank you all so much.

  141. Jupiter12 says:

    I’m floored by all of your brother’s accomplishments. He was incredibly talented and well-rounded. While I was at a funeral service about a year ago, I came to the grim realization that if I was to die tomorrow, people might be sad for a few days but things would quickly go back to normal for them. I haven’t done anything extraordinary with my life. That clearly isn’t the case with Mark. His loss will leave a gaping hole and his skills and intellect will be sorely missed by many. I’m sending kind thoughts to you and your loved ones. The inevitable waves of emotion that will repeatedly come and go in the months ahead can be difficult to navigate through. Hang in there, David.

  142. lorq says:

    Sincere condolences. The eloquence and thoughtfulness of your tribute speaks volumes about both him and you.

  143. shaberon says:

    Dear David, my sincerest condolences. He was clearly one of the good guys and we’re toasting his life tonight. I hope that he lived as long as he wanted and never wanted as long as he lived.

  144. arkizzle / Moderator says:

    David, I’m so sorry to hear your awful news. Your brother sounds like he was an incredible individual; an inspiration to the rest of us.

    I hope that you and your whole family (especially Mark’s contribution to the Pesco-clan) have the strength and support you need to get through this. We’re all here for you.

    All my love,

  145. Anonymous says:

    A life well lived.

  146. isaacb2 says:

    May his memory be for a blessing.

  147. Anonymous says:

    Seeing all these condolences I’m not sure if adding mine actually contributes anything. I’ve got a younger brother who I don’t see or speak to nearly as much as I should. Hearing of your loss really made me stop and think about this. I can’t imagine losing my little brother, nor do I think he can imagine losing his older one; then I read something like this and realise how fortunate I am.

    Given that, I guess a thank you is in order, but anything I can muster is too tinged with sadness.

    I am truly sorry for your loss my friend.

  148. timetraveler says:

    Let no man be judged by the dot that ends the sentence. Mark wrote a Book Of Life. Carry him in your pocket, and he lives forever, remember well. Rare blessings return in the eyes of your children.

  149. franko says:

    deep condolences. :’ (

  150. tamar says:

    Baruch dayan emet. So sorry to hear of your loss. My condolences.

  151. aeryn says:

    I’m sure the world is a better place for your brother having been in it. Thank you for sharing him with us. You have my deepest condolences.

  152. Anonymous says:

    Your brother sounds like such a nice person. Sorry for your loss and wish your family peace.

  153. Anonymous says:

    i’m so sorry to hear….. my prayers truley out to his family!!!!

  154. T Nielsen Hayden says:

    So very sorry, David. Your brother sounds like a great guy. I can’t begin to imagine the shock.

  155. Alys says:

    My condolences to you and your family.

  156. Anonymous says:

    You and I do not know each other, but I knew and worked with your brother and his wife, Ora. I am so deeply saddened by your loss. I will very much miss seeing Mark. My deepest condolences.

    David Kareken

  157. lovemoose says:

    My condolences and love to you and your family, David.

  158. pinehead says:

    My condolences to you and your family, David. Your brother was a remarkable man. His departure has surely sent shockwaves around the world to all those lives he’s touched. I’m sorry for your loss and sorry that we lost a man like him.

  159. mlw99 says:

    May fond memories, the support of family and friends and the simple passage of time aid you through this difficult time. That was a worthy tribute to your gallant brother. –Mark

  160. Orpheline says:

    Thank you for sharing this remembrance of your brother; my thoughts and prayers are with you and yours today.

  161. Anonymous says:

    I salute your brother for all he has done, and I thank you sir for introducing him to those of us who never had the honor of meeting him in person.

    My heart is with you and your family.

  162. Anonymous says:

    Condolences to your family! Be strong in this time of loss, and use the remembrances of the good things about your brother to help you through. I hope you continue to post on BB when you are ready (not that you said you were pausing, but I am guessing you may have a time of mourning), and continue to infuse in us the awesomeness of the world that you see and that, clearly, your brother saw too. A little bit of him can live on in all of us.

  163. Anonymous says:

    What a great, interesting man. I’m sorry to hear that he passed away. It is very tragic and I’m sure that he will be greatly missed.

  164. Anonymous says:

    I’m really sorry to hear of your loss, but also happy for you to have had a life experience with such a great brother. He sounds like an amazing guy!

  165. forgeweld says:

    Condolences to you and the rest of Mark’s family and friends. Your eulogy painted a picture of a fine human being that will be sorely missed, even by those who may not have known him personally. Thank you for sharing your love and admiration for him so beautifully.

  166. Flying_Monkey says:

    This is a wonderful tribute. I am truly sorry for your loss.

  167. minTphresh says:

    what an amazing man was your brother! the world sounds a little less colorful, with out him in it. so very sorry for your loss, david. and i send my deepest condolences to all the pescovitz family and friends. may your brother fly home on a gentle wind.

  168. Anonymous says:

    My heart ached to read this. I’m so very sorry for your loss, all the more keenly felt given the amazing nature of him lost. Please know that he inspires yet through your words.

  169. cryptique says:

    My deepest condolences to you. The world needs more people like your brother (and you), and to lose one too early is a loss to us all.

    This has been in the news here in Ann Arbor, of course. A comment below the story on includes a link to your tribute here at Boing Boing.

  170. Anonymous says:

    Your brother sounds like an inspiring person and I imagine there are many who would like to follow his example of giving so much to the world while following his passions. This was a beautiful tribute. I am so sorry for your loss.

  171. Stefan Jones says:

    A great loss. The world needs all the healing and healers it can get.

  172. gibson5string says:

    Sorry to hear about your loss! You and your family are in my prayers!

  173. Anonymous says:

    Condolences. I don’t recall knowing Mark but I recall many students at Walnut who spoke well of him.

  174. lorelei668 says:

    My heartfelt condolences to you and your family. The strides your brother made in research involving Type I Diabetes gave me hope, and the world is a better place because of him.

  175. JayeRandom says:

    I am very sorry to read this. You have my condolences.

  176. Katie says:

    David –

    So sorry to hear about your loss. Although I did not know Mark personally, reading your words about him have been inspiring. He sounds like the kind of person we all should aim to be. He found a way to give to the world while feeding his own passions.

    My thoughts to you and your family at this hard time,

  177. Kristin Gornstein says:

    As a singer with Indianapolis Opera this fall, Mark and Ora opened their home to myself and 2 other singers. Although Mark was clearly busy at all times of the day, one of the first days I was staying at their home, he took the time to sit down with me, getting to know who I am and making me feel welcome in his home. He was a truly generous soul.
    My condolences to you and your family.
    Kristin Gornstein

  178. Ian Holmes says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this David. You’ve written about Mark before so many times on here. He sounds wonderful.

  179. devophill says:

    My condolences to your family, David. I’m glad I had the opportunity to be enlightened by your brother’s contributions to boingboing, he made the world a better place by his being in it.

  180. Anonymous says:

    ach, what a bad, bad thing to hear.

    thank you for inviting me to remember him, and for telling these amazing things about your brother.


  181. Anonymous says:

    So sorry to hear this – sounds like he left the world a *much* better place. Bless him.

  182. libelle says:

    My condolences. Your writing of him makes me think of the lines from Hamlet: What a piece of work is a man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties, in form and moving how express and
    admirable, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god!

  183. Anonymous says:

    David, my heart is so heavy with the news of Mark’s untimely death. He will be greatly missed by so many, but never forgotten. Your sister is my sister-in-law. My condolences to the whole family, friends, and colleagues. May his memory be for a blessing.

  184. Frank_in_Virginia says:

    A very beautiful posting about a very special man. Thank you for sharing with us David.

  185. ransom notes says:

    David, that was a deeply moving and beautiful piece. My heart goes out to you, and your entire family. If there is anything you need, I have never been closer. – s –

  186. Darrell West says:

    My condolences, not just to you are your entire family, but to the entire world, as it has lost a bright light. I find so few people deserving of any respect, including myself. So it says a lot for me to say that I admire and respect your brother.

  187. michaelannb says:

    My sympathies on the loss of your remarkable brother. Irreplaceable.

  188. cst says:

    I had the great opportunity to scrub in cases with Dr. Pescovitz on several occasions here in Indianapolis. He was a wonderful surgeon and an even better human being. He always spoke very lovingly and proudly of his family to whom I send my deepest condolences. The O.R. will not be the same without him and he will be deeply missed.

  189. Anonymous says:

    David: Thank you so much for sharing and what a fitting tribute to your brother. I’ll be praying for comfort for your family during this time. This reminds me how precious and vulnerable life is. This post makes me want to do more with my life to help others like your brother did.

  190. Halloween Jack says:

    I’m so sorry to hear this, David. You and your family have my condolences.

  191. penguinchris says:

    As others have said, he’s a truly inspiring individual by the sound of it. I’m sure all of us here have been inspired to do something positive after reading your post.

  192. darshan53 says:

    I know how hard it is losing a Brother you always looked up to, I lost mine last year.
    He will never truly be gone while he is in you & your son’s hearts.
    It will get better, just give it time.

  193. Thad E Ginataom says:

    Deepest sympathy.

    it’s hard to say anything much more. I can quote something that I heard recently that really struck me, simple though it is, ought to be obvious, but is it to many of us? — It’s not the number of years its what a person does with them.

    Heck… you brother did a lot. And a lot of *good*.

  194. awjtawjt says:

    :( Terrible storm this weekend, and I am just so sorry to hear that you lost a great brother.

  195. Freddie Freelance says:

    I’m sorry for the loss all of humanity suffered with his death, his work in porcine T-Cell immunology and possible Pancreatic transplants sounds massively important to me, and everything else he did only made this world a better place.

  196. SteveBres says:

    I add my voice to so many others in extending condolences to you and your beautiful family. My heart and my prayers go out to you.

  197. TranslationalScientist says:

    It was my priviledge to have interacted with Mark at a scientific session last Spring. His counsel was clear minded and wise. I also greatly appreciated his warmth and wit. My sincere condolences to all of you on the loss of great man. We can only hope that he is probing the depths of heaven’s mysteries from afar now.

    שְׁמַע יִשְׂרָאֵל יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵינוּ יְהוָה אֶחָד

  198. robulus says:

    Terrible, tragic news David. My condolences to you and your family.

  199. Boondocker says:

    My condolences to you and his family & friends. I can’t imagine what you’re going through.

  200. Ike Okereke says:

    David, this news is shocking. Mark was a wonderful person who went out of his way to make others feel welcome. It is quite clear that he had a positive impact on all those around him. May I pass my deepest regrets to you and your family.

  201. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. I has the opportunity to work with your brother at IU and I have always found him to be engaging, insightful, and ready to provide much needed advice and cirection in starting my career.


  202. Anonymous says:

    Sorry to you and your family for your loss. He sounds like he was a great guy. May his life be an example to us all.

  203. Anonymous says:

    I graduated high school with Naomi and even though I didnt know her very well I read this and imagine a very amazing person!!! I am so sorry for your family’s loss and I will keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers

  204. SJ0508 says:

    I’m so sorry for your and your family’s loss. It’s evident by the beautiful piece you wrote that you admired and loved him very much and that the world has lost a truly remarkable individual. Please know you are all in our prayers.

  205. canida says:

    David, so sorry to hear about your brother. The world is a poorer place without him.

  206. Anonymous says:

    I am a member of the TrialNet diabetes study group, so I have known Mark for several years. We have all been deeply saddened by the loss of an outstanding colleague and a friend. He was a force of nature and will be missed. Sincere condolences to you and Mark’s family.

    Alberto Pugliese

  207. turbokoala says:

    Sorry for your loss of this wonderful human, David. I hope that we are all inspired to do more tikkun olam in his memory.

  208. danegeld says:

    Sorry to learn of your loss. Please accept my condolences

  209. Anonymous says:

    Thanks to all for your support and words of kindness. Reading these comments does help ease the pain

    Charles Pescovitz

  210. jay says:

    Dr. Pescovitz (as I knew him) was one of the good guys. In the summertime, there is a gap when no medical students are around. I was 19, just finished my freshman year in college, and was looking for some medical experience. Dr. Pescovitz took me on the transplant team, saddling me with all the responsibilities of a 3rd-year medical student. I rounded every day with the team at 6am, I ate lunch with the residents, and I scrubbed in (and held retractors) on the transplant cases. A couple years later, Dr. Pescovitz wrote a stellar letter of recommendation for me that likely single-handedly got me into medical school. Several years have passed; I’m now in anesthesia. Dr. Pescovitz never forgot my name, and he never passed me in the hallway without stopping to ask how I was doing. I just did a case with him this past Thursday at Wishard. As I was leaving the OR, I said “Take it easy, Dr. Pescovitz.” His reply was “It was good seeing you again, Jay”.

  211. Anonymous says:

    David – I am so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts are with you. Love HS buddy Tracy

  212. Anonymous says:

    I worked at Riley Hospital for Children as a nurse in the intensive care unit when we first started doing pediatric liver transplants. I remember Dr. Pescovitz to be kind, thoughtful, brilliant, and always very eager to teach his students and the nurses. I am sorry for the loss to his family and to the medical community.

    Jeanette Boland

  213. murray says:

    What an amazing person. He probably did more with each year of his life than I’ll do with my whole life. I don’t know where people like Mark get their energy from. I’m sorry for your loss, David, and for the world’s loss.

  214. Anonymous says:

    David are so sorry for your loss. You have our deepest condolences.
    Lew and Nina Frauenfelder

  215. Talia says:

    Condolences to you and yours.

  216. Kimmo says:

    Condolences D :

  217. Anonymous says:

    I’m so sorry for loss.

    What a wonderful remembrance you’ve given here.

  218. otterson says:

    I am so sorry to hear this. You have my sincere sympathies.


  219. cousin229 says:

    A remarkable person and a huge loss for humanity, my sincere condolences to the whole family.

  220. petsounds says:

    I’m sorry to hear this, David. There are lots of “sorries” on this page, all of which do little justice to your grief or your loss. And yet, it sounds that your brother had a life that no one should grieve over. It sounds that he was the kind of man that tries to live each day as it is his last, something which I aspire to as well. His vigor in improving the life of others shows that his life is worth celebrating with equal vigor.

  221. mb009 says:

    To Dr. Pescovitz’s family,

    I am a young reservist. Due to the weather, we were realeased from drill early by our command. I live 2.5 hours from the base and in total, it took 7 hours to get home. I stopped at a rest stop to take a break from the drive. When I got back onto the expressway, the conditions were seemingly worse and everyone in front of me, including myself, were traveling at about 40, if that. It happened in slowmotion about 3 cars up, a car sliding out of control and into a semi-truck. I was able to get past the semi, and I called 911 to report the accident. Several other people stopped to get out of their car. I guess it was the military in me, I just wanted to help. I threw my cover on and ran to the car, asking if everyone was okay. The situation seemed under control and I turned my attention to the oncoming traffic that needed to be slowed down.

    I wanted to let you know that your brother was not alone in his last moments. In an effort to save his life and the lives of others, several civilians stopped, 2 servicemembers (one being a nurse) stopped, 2 doctors stopped, and another nurse stopped. I watched as these people jumped from their cars into the blistering weather without coats, gloves or hats and onto the dangerous expressway to get to him as quickly as possible. I watched as police ran up a hill through snow to get to his car. He was not alone, not even then.

    As I look at his picture and match a name to the face, I am filled with a sense of heartache and happiness. This was a man that touched the lives of many and is now gone. From what I’ve read, he seemed to have a zest for life and a heart truly made for saving other people. I am thankful that I got a chance to help return the favor, even though our efforts were not successful.

    I am truly sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to your family at this time.

  222. Anonymous says:

    What an amazing man, what a life! I am very sorry for you and your families grief. , S. Rumsey

  223. abulafia says:

    Condolences, as wished above. I wish all your family well.
    I’m also very touched by the feelings of the happy mutants here.

    I remember your pride when posting about him previously. Speechless now…

  224. folkclarinet says:

    Thinking of you and your family.

  225. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for your loss. My favorite Mark story was when he became the Head photographer for the Chatterbox at Walnut Hills, he took a photo of himself holding his head on a platter..The “Head” photographer. That was long before Photoshop, but Mark knew how to do it. He got me interested in Photography, and that has been my life. I owe him for that, but also for sharing his talents with me.
    I send my condolences to his brothers and sister. He was an amazing guy, and I am sure will be an inspiration to not only his own children, but many others. He was a mensch.

  226. jimh says:

    So very sorry for your loss.

  227. Anonymous says:

    Mark, truly a great man…celebrate his life/amazing work and he will always be loved/remembered…peace/love to all the Pescovitz family.

    Robert Jason jackson

  228. Anonymous says:

    So sorry to hear of this David. Thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Sincerely, Karla Chenault Kennard

  229. sodium says:

    david that was a truly wonderful and touching insight into such a great person.

    you were blessed to have a wonderful human being like Mark as a brother.

    sincerest condolences to all your family from mine.

    bondi beach australia

  230. adam says:

    My deepest condolences, David.

  231. ecologist says:

    Sympathy for your loss, prayers for your brother and his family, thanks to you for writing such a moving account, and oh oh oh the sense of how much everyone who came in contact with your brother lost, how quickly. You were blessed to have such a brother.

  232. Anonymous says:

    David, Such a loss for you, and the world. The Rocket ship journey’s we watched together this summer replays a lot in my mind. I love you and Kelly so much. I am thinking of you and sending you all of my Chi and love. Renée

  233. Bevatron Repairman says:

    What a terrible tragedy. There are no adequate words, so I will use the only ones that suffice: I’m sorry.

  234. teapot says:

    Sincere condolences from teapot to the Pescovitz tribe.

    Might I comment that Mark’s artwork you posted Blue Depth: Catedral de sal de Zipaquira has an amazing van Gogh-esqu dreaminess to the sky.

    RIP Mark.

  235. TEKNA2007 says:

    A shining example of a life lived to the fullest, and a heart-breaking loss. You and your family have all my sympathies.

  236. f sharp a sharp infinity says:

    I’m sorry to hear of your loss. Good luck with the grief journey, it is truly a strange one.

  237. petreboing says:

    I really have nothing to add that would make a difference; losing a great friend isn’t easy. It hurts me for you.
    Zipaquira…the salt of the earth. I tasted the walls as a child and they were good.

  238. Eddie Codel says:

    This is a beautiful remembrance for an extraordinary human being. He’s the perfect example of what man can aspire to. So sorry for your loss, David.

  239. Anonymous says:

    Mark was truly an inspiration to us all. It was such an honor to have known him. We will all miss him at the Jewish Federation terribly. He was truly an incredible leader and what a wonderful kind-hearted human being.
    You have left your footprint on the lives of so many and we will cherish you always.

  240. Carla Greenbaum says:

    Dear Ora, Aliza, Ari,Naomi,and David
    I am only a colleague of your husband and father and brother and yet, I feel a profound sense of loss. I want to share with you in this brief note a few of my immediate images and memories of Mark.

    A decade of interaction at meetings and countless conference calls. Teasing him about needing a haircut and eating too much junk at meeting lunch breaks. Discussing how proud he was of Ora, literally glowing when describing what an amazing woman she is and how lucky he was to have found her, sharing various antics of his kids. Law, architecture, journalism – okay, we laughed that none of my kids went into medicine either – but he had so much joy talking about his kids that though we never met, I felt that I knew a bit about each of them. Freewheeling banter on scientific concepts and joint pragmatic problem solving devoted to just getting things done. Emotional discourse on mutual mid-life issues. Wondering what he was going to do next; having already the blessings of a happy marriage, wonderful children, a gratifying and successful career caring for patients in clinical practice and moving medicine to the cutting edge, as well as active involvement in his community. He was thoughtful and contemplative. He looked for challenges. He had a great sense of irony and humor. He was impatient with process, yet willing to make things work. He was first with the new technologies among the old farts at meetings – showing off his iPad with a twinkle. He was a great speaker who engaged both lay level and sophisticated audiences. He blew away my stereotype of surgeons, only the fact that he was a pediatric surgeon allowed me to keep my prejudices since everyone knows that all pediatricians are nice. Passionate, involved, knowledgeable. He did serious work, but didn’t really take himself too seriously. That’s probably what really drew me to him. Sure we argued, sometimes intensely. “What the heck were you thinking when you went to Iran of all places”, I would bug him. “People are interesting there too,” he replied, and “I may be able to help someone”. Until his death, I knew nothing about his photography and its relationship to his worldwide travels. I should have known – he was always a keen observer. I lobbied to get him involved in AIPAC, he was wary; he talked about his role in the Federation and other Jewish causes. “Someday” we were going to get together with our spouses and share some good times all together. Can’t believe “someday” won’t come. What an amazing guy. I miss him terribly. My heart goes out to his family and his local community. He really did make the world a better place.
    Hamakom yenachem etchem b’toch she’ar avelai Tziyon Vi’yerushalayim.
    “May God comfort you among the other mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.”
    Carla Greenbaum

  241. Mahendra Govani says:

    It was a privilege to work with Mark at IU med center for almost 8 years. We became good friends and continued to communicate since I left IU almost 4 years ago. In fact, we talked with each other about a week ago regarding a study. I learned a lot from him and will miss him.

  242. Anonymous says:

    David, and Family,
    It is very obvious what a special person your brother Mark was. He has surely touched many people, more then you can know. As I read your message, I was thinking of tikkun olam before you mentioned it. I did not know your brother, but after reading your, and others postings, I wish I had. I can tell you that like others who have passed, but have touched those around them, his memory and spark does, and will live on for a very long time. My condolences , Rick Alovis, Boca Raton Florida.

  243. Anonymous says:

    I am so saddened by this news & so sorry for your loss. In December 2008 I was fortunate enough to have met Mark, he was an artist in an exhibition about “untrained” artists @ gasp gallery in Brookline while I was the gallery director. I recall our email correspondence over the months leading up to the opening, he was so excited about showing his photographs & being able to discuss them with other artists. Magda (gasp owner & Mark’s friend) had long told me how impressive his art was & that she was pushing hard to have them fly in for the reception. When we received the prints in the mail I just fell in love with them. When Mark came to the opening I was even more impressed by how humble & funny of a person he was. I spent a large amount of the opening talking with him & his wife about their many travels, his fascinating work & their children. I recall that he was so proud of them, I believe a recall a boy and a girl and 1 was an artist as well. After the opening we all celebrated at the home of a local artist & it was a beautiful winter night in Cambridge & Mark seemed very happy. That’s how I’ll always remember him. I’m so grateful to have briefly known him.

  244. Anonymous says:

    I didn’t know Mark, but he sounds like the kind of guy I would have loved to spend time with. So sorry for your loss.

  245. Anonymous says:

    I have spent all day trying to decide how to articulate my deep sadness, shock and depression at hearing this news. David, you don’t know me but Mark was one of my earliest colleagues and friends. we first met almost 30 years ago at the NIH as colleagues in the same lab. Mark was the surgeon, I was the PhD. Mark was the creative scientist, who showed me my first operation (on pigs no less). Ora, Mark and Leah (my wife) and I would see each other socially and were just at the start of raising our children. It was a great time and full of memories. In fact, Rafi (Ora’s brother ended up in my lab).

    Our paths would cross often as Mark and I hung out at transplant meetings, talked science and collaborated on the work that led to the diabetes paper you described above. Mark was so smart, so dedicated and such a nice guy, he really was. I recently saw Ora in Michigan (she and I now share the same job) and we talked about the challenges of separation, the commute from Indiana to Michigan but the love and constancy of the relationship that made it work. I remember e-mailing Mark to tell him how much I enjoyed spending time with Ora and wondered how we could find a way for the 4 of us to get together again.

    So here I am struggling to tell you how important Mark was to me, my family and career. He made me look good, he made everyone look good. He made a difference, big difference in the world. He was an important human being.

    Please give my best to Ora and the family from leah and I. We will not make it to Indiana but our spirit will be there.

    Jeff Bluestone

  246. dia sobin says:

    David, It is an especially sad time of year to lose someone. My sincerest condolences go out to you and your family. Please allow yourself to be comforted, though, by the fact that your brother’s was a life well-lived.

  247. ChaChaMan says:

    Mark has been a good friend. Given his gusto for life, the shock of this loss is even more jarring. He will be deeply missed. This, once again, causes me to reflect that life is just too short, especially when it involves someone with such a giant and giving heart. The volume of posts here is a small testament to the greatness of this man. Mark, you will be deeply missed. Ora, David, and all his family, my thoughts and prayers are with you.

    –scott jones

  248. rebaaron says:


    I’m so sorry for your loss. I was incredibly lucky to have known your brother – my family is part of a havurah (group of friends) with he and Ora. From your bio, I’ve learned things about Mark I didn’t know… which makes me even sadder that he’s gone. My thoughts are with you and your family, Ora, Aliza, Ari, and Naomi. Ha’makom yenachem, may the source of peace grant you comfort.


  249. Anonymous says:

    Wow, what sad, shocking news. I don’t know you or your brother, but wanted to add my condolences. Your post was very touching. Sounds like Mark was an amazing guy.

  250. Anonymous says:

    Despite never having met Dr. Pescovitz, I find myself moved and saddened by this news. Previous BoingBoing posts (and several of the comments seen here) have made it clear that he was truly one of the great people of this world, and the loss of someone like this is indeed a loss for humankind. It is of course even more so a loss to those who knew and loved him, and to them I offer my condolences. It must have been a great honor and pleasure to know a man who could inspire and affect so many people.

  251. Anonymous says:

    I am so sorry for your loss David. As a stranger across the globe, I always noted the love and respect you have for your brother as it came through so strongly in your writing. My condolonces for you and your family.

  252. yclept says:

    Wow David. So sorry for your loss. Mark sounds like an incredible person. Thanks for posting this here.

  253. LynJ says:

    What a great big brother! Sounds like he very much influenced all the siblings to follow–who would you all be if he hadn’t been him? So Mark’s influence extended not only to the many, many people he touched during his life but to all the folks his younger brothers and sister and of course wife and children affect. That is a true legacy.

  254. Anonymous says:

    Mark and Ora were very kind friends to me when I lived in Indianapolis. They often invited me to join them at temple for the high holidays and I always looked forward to dinner after at their home – every time a raucous, lively, smart and warm affair with a large congregation of family and friends sharing food and ideas around their incredibly long, purpose built dining table. Mark and I had an ongoing dialogue about the relationship between science and art that we sustained over coffees and emails and even during his own gallery show opening in Boston. His curiosity and love of ideas made him a really cherished conversation partner. The world benefited greatly from his warmth, compassion, intellect and humanity. He will be missed by many many. Rebecca U., Boston

  255. artaxerxes says:

    My deepest condolences to you and your brother’s family. Truly a wonderful and inspiring man.

    I recently educated myself in the concept and some of the history of the practice of tikkun olam. I am inspired by his work and life and your tribute has made my commitment to helping others so much stronger. May you find peace in your sorrow. Much respect and light, a.

  256. Anonymous says:

    I am a photography student at Herron Art School (IU) in Indianapolis and Mark sat in some classes with us this last semester. We liked his sense of humor and even his excitement (and sometimes frustration) of processing film in a darkroom. He was always quick to compliment all of us on our quest for creativity and yet we could see was very creative too having constructive suggestions for us. I think he was having fun hanging his photographic work up with ours during critique classes. He was a great guy and will be missed.

  257. Nancy Munson says:

    My husband Dave and I were shocked and so sorry to hear of Mark’s passing. I had the privilege of saying hello to him and Ora Saturday at the U of M’s “Big Chill” Tailgate and it makes me so sad to think that was the last time I would see the two of them together.Please accept our heartfelt sympathy and please pass it on to Ora and her children and your entire family. We offer our prayers for all of you.- Nancy Munson

  258. davevontexas says:

    My condolences, that sounds quite a guy to lose… I’m terribly sorry.

  259. pstyle67 says:

    David – I feel badly to have never gotten to know your brother on the few occasions we were both present. He sounds like a remarkable man, with so much to offer, mind, body & soul. A life that truly touched many others – my thoughts are with you and the entire Pescovitz clan.

    Much love – Patty

  260. David Pescovitz says:

    Again, thank you all so much for sharing your thoughts here. Reading these comments is comforting for my entire family. Thank you.

  261. YuriGagarin says:

    My deepest condolences for having to say goodbye to such a wonderful person.
    Hashem Natan VeHashem Lakah – Yehi Shem Adonai Mevorah

  262. Justin Ried says:

    I’m so sorry, David! What an absolute tragedy. Love and deepest condolences to you and the family. Justin.

  263. JDavid says:

    So sorry to hear of such a tragedy. Is does strike one odd how the truly good are always ripped away too soon. From my family to yours, our deepest condolences, prayers and thoughts.

  264. druse says:

    Dear David,

    I’m terribly sorry for your loss of what seems to have been an inspiring and wonderful man.

    I will light a candle for you and your family when I get home.

  265. rebdav says:

    Baruch Dyan Emet
    It seems that your brother finished his tikun early. We all have a job in life and not so may of us actually get to come close to finishing it. It makes me sad for myself that I have missed meeting another amazing person in this life.

  266. zax says:

    I’m so sorry. My heart goes out to you.

  267. vjsheehan says:

    A terrible loss for all of us at IU. A favorite moment was seeing Mark at a holiday party in his Oy! To The World sweater.

    May the joy of his soul live on through those who were touched by his life.

  268. butfirst says:

    What a beautiful tribute to such an amazing man. Thank you so very much for sharing that with us, David. Heartfelt condolences to you and your family, my thoughts are with you.

    Jeff (Sydney, Australia)

  269. Anonymous says:

    RIP. Please accept my sincerest condolences.

  270. Anonymous says:

    To David and Mark’s family,

    I am sitting here remembering those moments over coffee at many transplant meetings after Mark was up on the podium so humble about the new bit of science that he had shared with us. Mark continued to be at the hub of translational medicine and our overlaping intersection with David Sachs had made us kind of scientific cousins. In fact he was just recently discussing joining a translational consortium at JDRF that we were building. We always caught up on each others life and it was clear to me how much he loved his family and his life. He got joy from it all.

    In recent years we shared a bond of having jobs that were in different cities from our families and spouses and we shared many a laugh about the challenges.

    May his memory be a blessing
    Julia Greenstein

  271. Anonymous says:

    I’m really sorry, Dave. My condolences for you and your family :´(

  272. Anonymous says:

    I am saddened. The world has had a kind, warm gifted spirit walk the earth. He left us a legacy of compassion and giving and we are better for that. He will be missed.

  273. Anonymous says:

    The loss that our family feels is immeasurable. Mark was not only the foundation of his immediate family, but of all of us that were proud to call him brother, uncle, nephew cousin, friend, co-worker or patient. He touched the families of those he saved, as well as those whom he could not. He put everyone first before himself. He loved the obtuse, as well as the mundane. His sense of humor puzzled those who did not get it right away, and caused belly laughs galore for those who did. His commitment to his community- whether it be Cincinnati, Indianapolis, Michigan or places he visited, or to his medical community was unending. There was way more he intended to do in this life. We have all lost a great man. Our hearts are broken- our wonderful memories of him must live on! Go with peace and love my brother!
    Special thanks to the soldier and medical personal who stopped to help and to make sure he was not alone!

  274. Douglas Rushkoff says:

    What a life.
    I remember him from your wedding, but hadn’t realized just how much *else* he had done besides all the medical/science breakthroughs. What an amazingly fruitful existence he had.

  275. The Mudshark says:

    My condolences.

    After reading what you have written about your brother I feel sad for the world, let alone his family, to have lost such an extraordinary man. At the same time there is a little comfort in knowing he has not wasted a minute of his time.


  276. Anonymous says:

    I am sorry for your loss. I was an ICU Nurse at IU from 91 until 2007. I also did a year in the OR. Even though I didn’t work with Transplant patients much when ever I did have contact with Dr. Pesovitz he was pleasant. And now reading this, what a truely awesome person and Surgeon. With Deepest Sympathy, Ginny RN

  277. RobG says:


    I am also a transplant surgeon and I had the pleasure to know your brother Mark and to work with him on many projects over the last 25 years. He was one of my favorites — always interesting and always a significant contributor to anything we worked on. Your tribute to him nicely captures what a talented, dedicated and unique individual Mark was. He will of course be deeply missed by his family, but also by his extended family in the field of work he so much enjoyed and was so commited to.

    I hope to attend the services on Thursday and look forward to meeting you there.

    Rob Gordon, MD FACS

  278. Pat L says:

    Say not in grief ‘he is no more’ but live in thankfulness that he was.

    David, you have written a beautiful, and moving tribute to your brother.

    Mark’s work to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes will go on and it will be because of his work that a cure will be found.

    He did make the world a better place, and he is missed.

    Pat Laskowski, IUPUI

  279. Anonymous says:

    We are all thankful to live here on earth,but those who get to go to heaven are truly Blessed,with all my sincere thoughts and prayers go out to the friends and family.I will truly miss Dr.Pescovitz,I will never forget the day that I had the pleasure of taking care of his father in-law,love to you Ora,be Blessed.

    Taby(Organ Transplant Unit)

  280. Anonymous says:

    My thoughts are with you and your family. I was a resident and fellow at Riley Hospital for Children. Ora was my mentor and I had the amazing opportunity to know Mark through Ora. When my son was about 4 years old, Mark found out that he enjoyed listening to opera. Mark gave us tickets to the Indianapolis Opera. By sharing these tickets, he was sharing something he loved with our son.
    My heart goes out to Ora and your entire family.
    Nerissa Kreher

  281. Anonymous says:

    Dear David, I’m so sorry about your brother.
    – loyal boingboing reader, Genie Ogden

  282. Anonymous says:

    My heart aches for you, your family, Ora, and Mark & Ora’s children. Mark and Ora were an extraordinary pair. This is an unfathomable loss to everyone. My deepest condolences.

    Greg Zimet

  283. Anonymous says:

    David, I send my deep condolences to you and your family. Thank you for the nice piece about Mark; it is a great update on his life for old neighbors like me. I remember the day you were born David, my birthday, and wish you well in your endeavors. Max Gillman

  284. Felton / Moderator says:

    So sorry for your loss, David.

  285. Sonja says:

    I apologize in advance if this is crossing a line. I was a patient of Dr Pescovitz years ago. He was a part of my first transplant team. I always liked him. He was very nice, funny, and had a very caring bedside manner.
    Thank you for posting this. It’s a beautiful dedication to an amazing man. It couldn’t have been easy. My condolences go out to you and the rest of his family.

  286. Boris Bent says:

    Nearly seven years ago my family and especially the life of my two older children were dramatically changed for the better. We met Dr. Mark Pescovitz. Thanks to Dr Pescovitz, Maisie and Luke are living today. The world will miss Dr Pescovitz dearly. We all are born and we all will die, but what really matters is what is done with the time we are given in between. By sharing his knowledge, wisdom, care, and love, the world is a better place. My condolences to all who knew him more than I did. When the effects of the good things a person does lives beyond that of the individual, it is proof that we can transcend beyond our human condition. Thank you Dr. Pescovitz.

  287. Anonymous says:

    I worked with Dr. Pescovitz at IU for several years. He was always very kind and a true gentleman – even under the most stressful of situations. I had other surgeons bite my head off when they were stressed, but never Dr. P. This was an amazing look into his life, and I thank you for sharing it with the world. I was so saddened to hear about this. My thoughts are with you and the rest of the family.

  288. Anonymous says:

    I was in Marks last photography class. I loved hearing about his travels and how he incorporated photography into his life. One recent project he did that stuck out to me that we all loved was a self portrait he took in his home, specifically in his pool. It was serene and beautiful and we all told him it deserved to be an almost life size photograph. I am touched by the short time I was able to know him.

  289. MLowenhaupt says:

    I knew Mark since 2nd Grade at North Avondale and am so saddened by this terrible tragedy. I hold Mark in the very highest esteem and will always treasure the time I have spent with him.
    Manuel T. Lowenhaupt, MD

  290. Anonymous says:

    I am greatly saddened by mark’s untimely death. My heart goes out to Ora, the children, and other family members. Deanna Beyer

  291. Anonymous says:

    The Indiana State Museum was one of the benefactors of Dr. Pescovitz’s considerable intellect and generous spirit. His loss is a trajedy for those who might not have known him, as well as those who did know and love him. He was a truely beautiful human being who made this world a better place. It is hard to reconcile the loss of someone like Dr. Pescovitz at such a vital age. Mark’s friends at the Indiana State Museum extend our sympathy to his family.

  292. Anonymous says:

    I am eternally grateful to Dr. Peskovitz for giving me my first break in the world of American Surgery. Being a foreign medical graduate, it is without mention that getting a chance to train for surgery in this country would be nearly impossible without some help. I have never met Dr. Peskovitz, but he allowed me to scrub in his cases, which allowed me to meet the other surgeons and my prospective mentors. His generosity and willingness to help has touched many lives, but most of all, I am indebted to him for allowing me to become the surgeon that I am today. God bless you Dr. Peskovitz and may His eternal light shine upon you.
    LG Palanca, MD FACS

  293. Anonymous says:

    All of us at Wishard in the Interventional Radiology Dept wish to offer our condolences. He will always be remembered for his warm smile and quick wit. He will be dearly missed.

  294. Anonymous says:

    I met Mark when I was working for Roche. Our friendship never ended…we were good friends for 15 years.

    I read many articles through the years about the pursuits and talents of his brothers. About six years ago, I challenged Mark to really push forward with his photography. I don’t know if you know that a couple years back, an eBay seller was offering Mark’s early work: on a whim I had done some sort of weird search that turned it up. I bought a photograph, and his brother Charles (?) bought others…and learned the seller had somehow acquired the pieces through an estate sale of some kind. That seller turned out to be a very knowledgeable art juror and I think Mark finally understood his great, great talent for what it was. He was no hobbyist. One of his pieces is in my living room now. He gave it to me because…well, that is who he is (I can’t say was).

    I loved Mark, who was one of the most unusual people I have ever met. Deeply private, artistic, and lonely in the sense even well traveled artists are. He was that, above all else you know; his mother’s son indeed. Over the weekend I sent him a photo I had taken in Lucerne, CA. He thought it pure artistry, and I responded as you see below. Note his words back. He describes himself. Our friendship of so many years was based upon this…how I loved the pilgrim soul of him.

    My sincere condolences to you and the family who loved him so well, who are part of him.

    —–Original Message—–
    > From: Mark Pescovitz
    > To: lcborre
    > Sent: Sat, Dec 11, 2010 9:07 am
    > Subject: Re: Lucerne, CA photo
    > an artist is someone who sees what others do not
    > On Dec 11, 2010, at 12:00 PM, linda wrote:
    > > If an artist is someone who is driving and aimlessly pointing her
    > > phone in the
    > direction of the lake hoping to capture 2 percent of the beauty around
    > her, then that is what I am I guess :-). We have clients we care for in Ukiah…lucky me.
    > It’s a 2.5 hour drive, but beauty is everywhere.

    I just realized–now Mark is everywhere.
    Linda Clark-Borre

  295. Kirsten Anderson says:

    I’m so sorry David, for all your family. I know he must have known how much you adored him. The saddest of losses.
    Love, Kirsten Anderson

  296. Anonymous says:

    Maxa, Bob, Michael, Charles, Rick and David. I am so sorry about your loss. I remember Mark while playing on Rose Bud avenue as a kid. He was as David says always in a different stratosphere, brilliant and inquisitive, but always kind. Later in life our paths crossed on one or two occasions and I was always very impressed with his accomplishments. His career as a scientist left an indelible mark on society and in the medical field. I encourage you to keep his legacy alive through his photography and other interests. Having lost a sister at a young age, I know how you feel about this tragic loss. Our prayers are with you all.



  297. pam says:

    my heartfelt condolences to the entire Pescovitz family-

    I have the great good fortune to have met all the members of this wonderful family over the years that Maxa and I have been friends.
    Your brother is a blessing and a light… may he be in peace.

    sending healing love and light to you all, Pam Goldwasser

  298. Anonymous says:

    David, you do not know me nor did I know your brother but after reading your tribute to him I feel as though I had known him for a long long time. What a treasure he has been not only to your family but to The University of Indiana and the world he served so brilliantly. I could only wish I had a big brother like him to learn from. I had no siblings. Our family lost a son and a husband within three months in 2009 so know how to share in your sorrow. Nancy from Ann Arbor

  299. Anonymous says:

    David –

    So sorry for your loss. Mark was a great help to me during my post-doc. He was a great man and I am a better person for knowing him. Please give a hug to Ora. Gretchen

  300. Anonymous says:

    My condolences to Dr. Ora Pescovitz and the entire family. Dr. Ora Pescovitz was my amazing medical school advisor. I met Dr. Mark Pescovitz while on my pediatric surgery rotation when he came to perform a liver transplant at Riley. Truly an amazing attending who will be remembered always.

  301. Anonymous says:

    glorious life. what a great brother, both of you. cheers

  302. Anonymous says:

    thank you for sharing your brother’s wonderful life. a most eloquent tribute to an amazing person, great regret he has been claimed prematurely by the wheeled plague. condolences from an aussie gran

  303. Anonymous says:

    I am a grown-up Beth-El kid, and IU medical graduate and resident. The Dr. Pescovitz(s) have always been such pillars and examples in our community, and role models to me. I remember him most for my times seeing him in the hospital, at wishard, taking care of our sickest and neediest patients with genuine care and concern and respect. We should all be so blessed to have such a life and legacy.
    Becky Epstein

  304. Peter Breese says:

    I’m so very sorry for your loss. As a former medical researcher turned artist now living in A2, I truly would have loved to have met your brother. There is no doubt Mark left the world a better place than he found it.

  305. Anonymous says:

    I met Dr. Pescovitz while working as an ultrasound tech at IU. I worked with him closely for several years. He was always very professional to all the staff and respected our opinions. He assisted in transplanting someone who became a very good friend of mine.He wasn’t just her surgeon–he was a friend to all! He will be sooo missed. I never realized the depth of his many talents. To me, he was simply just a great,friendly, super intelligent guy who just happened to be a transplant surgeon. I will miss his smile and bushy mustache!!

  306. Anonymous says:

    You won’t remember me but Mark and I were close friends in high school (Walnut Hill ’73). I am so sorry for your loss. Mark was always a class act. I remember well the photo that you posted along with a picture of Mark holding a directional antenna on his head in our year book under the fictitious Radio Club. Luckily our antics in AP physics didn’t get us expelled. Please express my condolences to the entire Pescovitz family.
    Ed Golding

  307. Anonymous says:

    I attended Walnut Hills High School with Mark and was always impressed with not only his brilliance and humility. It’s not often that one specifically thinks about his 7th and 8th grade colleagues– for many of the reasons David described above, Mark was one of few that impressed me. I am saddened by this loss to his family. The world truly has been positively impacted by his contributions. Bill Palmer

  308. Anonymous says:

    I didn’t “know” Mark until I read the tragic news yesterday, and yet I’ve carried a sense of loss ever since. Thank you for sharing a little more of him with us David. My thoughts and prayers are with you, and all of Mark’s family.

  309. Yelaboo says:

    I was very sorry to hear about the tragic passing of Dr. Pescovitz. I’ve known him for several years. I worked with him as a nurse on the transplant unit and learned a lot from him about caring for transplant patients. The article that you posted about him was beautiful. My condolences are with you and his other family members. He will be missed! God Bless!

  310. Anonymous says:

    Dear Ora and Family,

    I am so saddened to hear about Mark. May you find comfort in memories and your family.

    With Deepest Sympathies,

    Ed Traisman

  311. Mariano says:

    My deepest sympathies to the entire Pescovitz family. I am so saddened by the news of Mark’s death. What a marvelous human being. I met Mark only a few times, when he was in his twenties. His brother Bob and I, Mary and Bill lived in Chicago pursuing acting careers. The entire Pescovitz clan came to visit. Needless to say, each one of you stood out in some brilliant way. But Mark had a joy about him that has stayed with me all these years. He exuded a beautiful smile and a sincere enthusiasm for —- everything! David, this amazing tribute that you’ve shared with us comes as no surprise, even though it is astonishing. What a life he led; what an inspiration he has been. Each one of us who knew him at some place, at some time, is fuller.

    I will think of all of you on Thursday.

  312. Xtineala says:

    David, I’m so sorry fo you and your family.
    I honestly didnt think modern day Renaissance men existed, apparently they do.
    What a wonderful, accomplished life he had.

    I’ve followed Boin Boing for years, but it wasn’t until today that I wanted to post a comment.

    My prayers and a hope for comfort,

  313. Anonymous says:

    I worked with Mark when he first came to IU, I scrubbed my first kidney transplant with him and loved every minute of it, kidney transplants are still my favorite case to this day because I learned so much from Mark. I will always remember his smile and sparkly eyes, his kindness and compassion. Thank you to all of his family for sharing him with all of us for all of these years.

  314. Anonymous says:

    Dear David, Ora, Aliza, Ari and Naomi,
    We share the sorrow of Mark’s wonderful family, hundreds if not thousands of friends and anyone whose life he ever touched. We first met Mark and the family when they arrived in Indianapolis more than 20 years ago. Over the next decade our so we had many opportunities to interact with his wonderful family. Even though we moved from Indianapolis we still followed with interest Mark’s involvement in the Jewish community and Ora’s phenomenal rise in the medical profession. Mark will be deeply missed by all who ever knew him.
    Ellen and Harry Nadler
    Boca Raton, Florida

  315. Anonymous says:

    My family and I are deeply saddened over the loss of your brother Mark. My wife and I have been in the presents of many surgeons yet, none carried such a charismatic personality. My fondest memory comes at 4AM on a September morning in 2004. I spoke with Dr. Pescovitz over the phone mumbling questions like all concerned fathers do when it comes to their child. I had been praying the voice is I hear on the other end was the voice I’ve been waiting for. This voice, Dr. Mark Pescovitz, was simply amazing. He later that morning performed the long awaited kidney transplant my son desperately needed. The months after visiting Dr. Pescovitz for routine check-ups, he always greeted us with a smile that could be seen for miles.
    Again, I’m very sorry for your, I.U. and our great loss. He will be deeply missed.

    Chris Newby

  316. Anonymous says:

    Dear Pescovitz Family:

    I am so very sorry for your loss. I received calls today to make sure I had heard the news. I was saddened and filled with disbelief.

    I worked with Mark over 20 years ago as a transplant nurse. When I was on call as transplant coordinator, I always hoped Mark would be the one on call. He was always the favorite to round with, do clinic with, and have him meet with prospective transplant patients.

    No one will forget that trademark mustache and funny little smirks as well as his dry sense of humor. He was so intelligent and willing to explain and impart his wisdom without making you feel inferior. I know he will be sorely missed in the medical community as well as by his patients.

    What a shame for this tragedy to take someone so wonderful and full of service to his fellow man.

    I will forever treasure the fact that he and Ora took the time to come to our wedding celebration. That meant a lot to me.

    I hope to meet you David and see the rest of the Pescovitz Family at his service on Thursday.

    My prayers for you Ora and the entire Pescovitz Family. He certainly deserves to be known as the Village Elder!

    Love to you.
    Jennifer McNair

  317. feralman says:


    Thank you for introducing your brother Mark to us. He seemed like a great cat, and being a type one diabetic myself, a loss with personal significance. All our love, Adam Parfrey and Jodi Wille

  318. Anonymous says:

    Thank you so much for this wonderful tribute to such a beautiful and talented man. As an employee of U of M Hospital, I have only known about the wonderful works of Mark’s wife Ora. Your eulogy shows the man behind Ora, and for that I am grateful. Only wish I had known him. May he rest in peace and may God help you, your family and especially Ora, recover from this tremendous loss. And may we all try to be more like Mark in all that we do. He had a love for life that seemed endless. UM RN

  319. Anonymous says:

    my heart is grieved

    Tom Walden, RN

  320. EllenSF says:


    I was saddened to hear about the loss of your brother from Nancy Drapin. It’s always difficult to lose someone. But then I read your heartfelt obit and began to get a sense of the wonderful person your brother was… as a person, a physician, an explorer, a photographer, a brother, husband and father. You told his story beautifully. I felt like I at least “met” him, if only briefly through your words. And then the wonderful list of comments. Hold them dear in the days ahead.



  321. Dead Air says:

    Very sorry for your loss David. The self portrait you included was artistic genius to rival the scientific you describe in your post. You do him great honor with your words and memorial.

  322. Anonymous says:

    We are so sorry to hear of the tragic loss of your brother. What an amazing person. We send our heartfelt condolences to you and your family. Cosey and Chris.

  323. Powerphail says:

    This is a lovely piece, your brother sounds like he was an awesome guy. RIP.

  324. Anonymous says:

    To the entire Pescovitz family- I’m very sorry for yours and all of our loss. Having worked and travelled with Mark for 9 years, I will miss him dearly. He was one of a kind. Scott Herring

  325. Anonymous says:

    What a fine brother Mark had in you. Thank you for sharing his spirit. Reading his story, my faith in humanity increased. It does not happen often. I am so sorry for your loss, and yet, you are also, evidently, left with enviable riches. God bless.

  326. Anonymous says:

    Rest Dr. P.
    Dr. P. was my transplant Dr. for my new liver on 9/9/97. For this and the great man that he is, I will forever be grateful to him and also my Donor. He will truly be missed. I am so sad.
    To his Family, I am saying prayers for you.
    James Gorski

  327. Anonymous says:

    A big dark hole will be felt in your families, in Indianapolis and the world. Such an unfair, sudden loss. We are so sorry.

  328. Anonymous says:

    Mark was an exceptional human being. He was a mensch. He loved his family, his community, his profession and his interests. He was always interested in what others were doing. I will miss his smile, the twinkle in his eye and his insights. He worked tirelessly to make the world a better place and we benefit from that.
    His 55 years on earth are a testament to what we can accomplish in our lifetimes.
    My heart goes out to you, Ora and the whole family. He will be missed. Thank you for your beautiful tribute to your brother.

  329. Anonymous says:

    Dear David
    I am so sorry for your loss, Mark sounds like an incredible human being and I hope that you and your extended family may be comforted during this tragic time. May Mark’s memory always live on a blessing.
    Stephen Wise

  330. Anonymous says:


    I am so sorry to hear about your loss. I will always remember the larger than life presence of Dr. Pescovitz entering my room after my liver transplant at IU. I enjoyed his visits mostly because he brought laughter and such an upbeat attitude. He was a talented surgeon and your loss is felt by those of us impacted by his medical knowledge and care.


  331. Anonymous says:

    I am a nurse who worked with Dr. Pescovitz in the operating room at Wishard Hospital. I have not been able to think about much else since I heard the news. My heart aches. Whenever I saw my assignment for the day and it included working with him, I knew it would be a good day. Sometimes I dread going into certain rooms. I never felt that way with him. He always treated me with respect and teased me alot. He always said Hi and asked how I was. Not many other surgeons do that. I just worked with him on Thursday. I can’t believe he is gone. There are many memories. One thing that amazed me about him was his hearing. I could be clear across the room whispering to someone and he could hear me. He would join right in the conversation even though he was in the middle of operating. It was hilarious. He made fun of my preps. He would say “You know you can’t kill every single bacteria on that arm!” He was a great man. I am so sorry to all of the family.

  332. Anonymous says:

    :::: Mark was one of my favorite people, Not only did we share art discussion- which i loved so much, but what i remember most is that he saved my life… Transplanting my kidney and allowing me to enjoy a new baby and family, as i know he did his … Thanks Mark for touching my life and we will talk Art again one day ::: P.s I will let you win the silent auction next time…. :::


  333. Anonymous says:

    Mark and Ora have been coming into 86th and Ditch Starbucks for as long as I can remember. When we had an art show, he purchased a piece of my work, and has always been supportive of my photography. Mark is greatly loved and will be missed dearly.

    Much Love,
    86th & Ditch Starbucks

  334. Keneke says:

    My condolences.

  335. Anonymous says:

    Dear Kathy and Charles….

    Therese sent me your brother’s blog… My thoughts are with you. I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. Shalom.. Marcia Laderman

  336. Merrie says:

    My deepest sympathies to the entire Pescovitz family. I was a frequent visitor to the Pescovitz childhood home as Mark’s older sister and I were best of friends then as well as now. I have seen Mark, Ora and their family over the years at gatherings, and was always kept up to date on all the wonderful accomplishments and acitivites in their lives. He will be truly missed by all those he came in contact with.

    My thoughts are with all of you.
    Love, Merrie

  337. Anonymous says:

    Mark was my classmate and friend from the first grade on. We all knew he was bound for greatness. Despite this tragedy, it’s wonderful to see that he achieved that greatness, not just in his career but in the hearts of so many who loved and appreciated him for thousands of reasons. My heart goes out to you, David, and to your brothers, your sister, to Ora and her family.

    Arna Cohen

  338. Anonymous says:

    To David and the rest of the Pescovitz family,
    I am so sorry to hear about the tragic passing of Mark. Though it’s been a very long time since I’ve seen him I consider him one of my greater Cincinnati family, having spent many, many holidays, milestone events and just good times growing up together in “The Queen City.” I think about your parents often and the impact their intelligence, creativity and gentleness have had on my life. It sounds like Mark has followed in their footsteps and has passed those same things on to many, many people.
    May his memory be for a blessing.
    All my love,
    Cindy Levitas

  339. Jack Daniel says:

    It sounds like Mark was truly a great and inspiring human being. I’m very sorry for your loss.

    My condolences,

  340. KMZ says:

    My deepest condolences to the Pescovitz family. I knew and worked with Mark during my days at Syntex Research in the 1990s as an Associate Medical Director when Mark was one of our best Investigators on the first large, randomized, multicenter kidney transplant study of mycophenolate (CellCept) that was eventually approved by the FDA. Mark and I stayed in touch and developed a friendship as he did with so many colleagues. He was a fine doctor and researcher, always helpful and personable. He would call when he was going to be in the Washington DC area where I live, and we’d meet for supper at a moment’s notice. I always cleared my calendar when Mark called to say he was going to be in town the next day. When I launched my drug development consulting business, Mark sent emails to colleagues telling them I was available to consult. He once joked that he was going to start a consulting business for consulting businesses. He always helped when there was an opportunity, and never asked for anything in return. When I introduced him to my husband, Brooke Lewis, we learned that Mark had an interest in aviation. Brooke and I both fly, keep a Beechcraft Bonanza in the Shenandoah valley, and offered that “one of these days” we needed to get Mark up in the air and learning to fly, and told him it would make things much easier for the commute to Ann Arbor to visit Ora. I also learned about Mark’s interest in the space program and the fact that, at different times in our careers, we had both applied to NASA to become Mission Specialists in the astronaut program. Mark’s interests seemed endless. Brooke and I kept saying we needed to fly out to Indianapolis to visit Mark, and I had always wanted to meet Ora and his family. Now, sadly, it’s just one of those things we never got to do. I can only imagine the deep sadness and grief his family must be feeling. I lost my mother suddenly in 1988 and know about such sudden loss. I became a physician due to her support. The loss is hard to bear, but eventually we come to know, if we don’t know already, that our loved ones want us to continue on and live our lives to the fullest. Small consolation, but we hold on to such thoughts. My heart goes out to all of you. I will miss Mark greatly, as will all of us who knew him.

    Kathryn Zunich, MD
    Arlington, Virginia

  341. Anonymous says:

    May God keep you and your family during this difficult time. Your in my prayers!

  342. Ipo says:

    I’m sorry for you people who were close to Mark, but I’m even more saddened that I never got to know him. It reads like he was a real Mensch (מענטש), interesting and fun. In a small way I share in your loss.

  343. Anonymous says:

    To Pescovitz Family:Work on Transplant with Dr. P.,he care for his patients, when the surgeons would do their rounding , how they took the time to go over their patients chart,checking out everything to make sure nothing was left undone, how they love the kids,took time with them to make the kids felt safe. Not only did they take care of their physical needs but their mental needs, it was a part of the healing process. Transplant Unit is a place where you can sink or swim(what I mean by this)it’s a unit where whatever is your part from unit secretary,technician,nurse,housekeeping,we work as a Team, to make sure our patients and their Families got The Best from all od us. My condolence to Dr. P. Family. God give you’ll strength most of all Love, to carry you’ll through this diffcult time. T.Woods

  344. Anonymous says:

    Tues a m at the Pancake House the hostess slams a paper down on my table and says “Did you see this???” Having already read about Dr Marks accident…..we were both saddened…..simply a man in the community of 86th Ditch rd…..that we all “knew” and really, really liked! My condolences to his family and legions of friends and admirers.

  345. Anonymous says:

    Very sorry to read about your brother. :(

    While I randomly came across this article, it sounds like he was an amazing person and if people had half his passion/values/beliefs, the world would be such a better place.

  346. mmechanic says:


    I’m so sorry to hear about your brother. He sounds like a phenomenal being. Wish I could have known him. Words obviously can’t make up for what your family must be going through, but just know that a lot of people, even those who only know you through your posts, are thinking about you and Mark, and were inspired by your account. —Mike

  347. Bevin says:

    I’m so sorry for your loss. What a moving tribute to your brother! Be gentle with yourselves.

  348. Anonymous says:

    I’m a read-only Anon for several years now and I normally don’t comment, but my deepest sympathies go to you, your family and whom else it may concern!


  349. David Pescovitz says:

    Wow. My family and I are overwhelmed with the kindness and love expressed in this thread, from those of you who knew my brother and also those who didn’t. Thank you so much from all of us.

  350. Anonymous says:

    My family, my partner Rob and our daughter Abbey Claire feel fortunate…no, honored to know Ora and to have known Mark. He was, as you so beautifully described, a truly remarkable guy. Rich with humor, sentiment, heart, talent and a will to do things, he’s an inspiration. I wish I could have known him better but know that we’re all fortunate to have encountered Mark however that might have happened. Our affection to you and the entire family…we’ll miss Mark and hold our great memories close!
    Steven Stolen

  351. Anonymous says:

    My heart aches for you. I am so sorry. The world has lost a wonderful man.

  352. Art says:

    Sending you and your family all of our condolences and prayers, David.

  353. Anonymous says:

    Dear David,
    I didn’t know Mark but I feel like I’m part of your Boing Boing global family, so I offer my sincere condolences to you and Mark’s family. Kia Kaha, buddy, be strong.

  354. dlove says:

    Dear David,

    I am so sorry to hear about your brother. Words are not meaningless at times like these, they are comforting and soothing, but they pale in comparison to enormity of what has happened. Your tribute was so lovely and affectionate.

    My thoughts are with you and your family at this bleak and difficult time.

    David Lovinger

  355. dlove says:

    Dear David,

    I am so sorry for your loss. Words are not meaningless at times like this; they are soothing and comforting, but they pale in comparison to the enormity of your loss. Your tribute to him was of a vibrant and creative man from a loving brother. It was just lovely.

    My thoughts, prayers and tears are with you and your family at this bleak and difficult time.

    David Lovinger

  356. buddy66 says:

    What a wonderful man! And what a terrible loss. My deepest sympathies to all who knew and loved him.

  357. Christine Chance Heald says:

    Dear David, Ora, Aliza, Naomi, and Ari,
    It has taken a couple of days for me to post as I struggle to put into words just how much your brother/husband/father meant to me. I am a post liver transplant patient from 1989. I first met Dr. Pescovitz in March of 1989 while interviewing hospitals to perform a life-saving transplant on my diseased liver. Upon meeting the transplant team, I knew I was in the right place. I have to admit that Dr. Pescovitz stood out as he was a tad intimidating. It was only later on that I learned that he was a life-sized Teddy Bear (I’m sure he’s rolling his eyes right now). I was a difficult case and was in and out of the hospital a total of 6 months out of that first year. Complication after complication occurred and he NEVER gave up on me. Not only did I receive the gift of 2 livers but I was given a surgeon who cared about me?! I knew he was a brilliant man but was so touched that he cared about me personally. He took time away from his family to come to my college graduation and was thrilled to death that I got married. My last interaction with Dr. Pescovitz was in 2007. Ironically, I worked for the IUSOM for a year and a half which of course was headed by him. I always avoided that hospital like the plague and I think he thought it hilarious that I ended up working there! That same year, I became acutely ill. The new transplant team was eager to re-transplant. My first thoughts…what does Dr. Pescovitz think? Well, he sat down with the nurse practioner and drew out a map detailing my complex innards. I didn’t end up retransplanted for which I am thankful. I am going to miss the assurance that Dr. Pescovitz gave me. I truly feel that a piece of my heart is missing tonight. My thoughts, prayers, and love go out to you and your entire family. Respectfully…Christine Chance Heald

  358. Anonymous says:

    Dear Pescovitz Family,

    Pam and I are offer our heartfelt condolences to you all. We both felt so fortunate to have known Mark and to have seen the extraordinary light of his life in all things that he touched, noticed, and embraced. For a man of so many talents, he made each of us feel important. This came from the grace of his generous heart energized by his genuine interest and curiosity in others. Mark and Ora and the rest of the Pescovitz family welcomed us into their home and shared their extended family holiday celebrations with us. This meant a great deal to both of us….more than I can say.
    David, we met you several times. I write this as I remember you joking around with Mark and having a good time at a Passover dinner. I’m going to keep this image in my head. It was our intention to travel to Indianapolis to attend the funeral, however, the bad weather and ice here in Kansas has forced us to cancel our travel plans. We wanted to be there to honor Mark with all of you. So please accept this message as our wish to join you and your family in your great expression of love for a man who meant so much to so many.

    With much affection and regard,
    Judith Levy and Pam Fine

  359. Anonymous says:

    It was sad news to hear this news about Dr. Pescovitz. My deepest condolences go out to his family. Dr. Pescovitz was one of my mentors, I enjoyed learning from him and I am glad I thanked him back then. He will surely be missed. I will pray for him and his family.

    Angel Palanca

  360. Anonymous says:


    I am really amazed by reading all this good things about your brother. Sounds like he was a great man. But i feel so sorry to you and his family for the big loss. May his departed soul rest in peace.
    ( Om Mane Pedmey Hung ) it’s Buddhist chanting which i am doing for your brother.

  361. Anonymous says:

    A great tribute to an even greater man. My sympathies for all those affected.

    Erik Ackermann

  362. Anonymous says:

    I am really amazed by reading all this good things about your brother. Sounds like he was a wonderful and the great person. May his departed soul rest in peace.

  363. Charlie Wiles says:

    I was privileged to know Mark as a participant of an interfaith dialogue that brought Jewish, Muslim and Christian leaders in Indianapolis together for constructive conversation designed to build trust, understanding and new opportunities to work together on areas of common interest. Mark added a beautiful voice/presence to the dialogues and I will forever remember my interactions with him. He had the most amazing qualities of brilliance and humility in our dialogues and our work together was just beginning- his legacy will inspire us indefinitely! Here is what others on the dialogue team had to say about Mark:

    Greetings of Peace to Everyone.

    We are so sorry to hear this news. I have only come to know Mark these past few months, and was impressed by his generous, caring spirit.
    May God Almighty bless his noble soul, and give his family peace and patience in this difficult time.

    Habibe Ali
    Chief Operations Officer
    The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)

    I am shocked and saddened to hear of Dr. Mark Pescovitz’s untimely departure from us. I pray that our merciful Lord will grant Mark rest and comfort all his family. I shall certainly miss him as a wonderful, caring human being and as an important member of our work for peace and understanding.

    I hope that Rabbis Dennis and Sandy will convey this note to Mark’s family.

    Fr. Nabil

    V. Rev. Nabil L. Hanna
    St. George Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church

    The Nur-Allah Islamic Center family, we send our deepest love and condolences to the family of Mark. We pray that G_d’s mercy and care be with them and that His good pleasure be with our Brother Mark. His kind words of wisdom will be missed by us all.

    May the Peace that only G_d (Allah) can give be with you!
    From Michael “Mikal” Saahir

    I just wanted to let you know how deeply saddened I am by this news. It was an amazing experience having him a part of the dialogue. The first part of our dialogue succeeded in developing friendship and understanding and I will miss him dearly. He was always so positive, upbeat and willing to try to understand others. The world needs more people like Mark. If peace and compassion has a chance we have to hope that there are many more Marks out there.

    I apologize for the somewhat emotional email but news like this seems to hit me harder these days. The dialogue and Riley connections make this news very difficult and painful.

    I will pray for him and his family.

    Shariq Siddiqui
    Executive Director, Muslim Alliance of Indiana

  364. David Biedny says:

    That is a moving tribute to what sounds like an truly exceptional person. My deepest condolences to you and your brother’s family.

  365. Anonymous says:

    Dear family and friends of Mark,
    I add my voice in this chorus of appreciation for Mark. He touched my heart with his kindness, thoughtfulness and brave dedication to the well being of all. I feel deeply shaken by our loss of him. I pray we will be redoubled in our efforts to “repair the world”as Mark strove so earnestly to do. Peace, Denis Kelly Jr.

  366. Revisorius says:

    There are no words. Your brother sounds like an incredible person. My heart goes out to the Pescovitz family.

  367. Anonymous says:

    David, I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your brother Mark. I always enjoyed your entries, articles, and stories of his extraordinary life and work. As a sufferer of Type 1 diabetes, I am eternally grateful to your brother for his dedicated work in that field in particular. My thoughts are with you and your family during your time of loss.

  368. Anonymous says:

    I had the pleasure of working with Dr. Pescovitz for 13 years. He was a great man and a great doctor. The transplant family has lost a wonderful soul that will never be replaced. My thoughts and prayers are with the entire Pescovitz family. He will be truly missed!

  369. RBL says:

    For the Pescovitz family:

    I am so terribly sorry to learn of Mark’s death. I came to know him through my wife Kathryn Zunich (#341 above), and always enjoyed our get-togethers when he was in Washington. As Kathryn mentioned, I was always hinting about mentoring him in learning to fly, but his answer was always that between work and family, he could never find the time, especially after he and Ora decided to be marriage commuters for a while at least.

    “Renaissance man” is apt. There were few subjects that did not interest him, and he was one of those people with whom one skipped small talk in favor of something intriguing. We’d begin a conversation as though there had not been any time since we last saw him.

    He was focused outward, not upon himself. I have learned many things reading this blog by David that Mark never mentioned.

    And that dry, all-knowing sense of humor. I remember his voice mail announcement that, after listing a couple of practical reasons (like surgery) why he might not be picking up, offered a possible third: “…or, I can see who is calling and I don’t want to talk to you.”

    The last time we saw him, he was in Washington and we had a meal. He was staying in a very commercial area and couldn’t get a recommendation for a restaurant that was not some bland chain. So as he got into our car we decided to see what our GPS might bring up. We decided on some strange little family-owned Chinese place with the entire second floor room to ourselves for good, mirthful conversation and catching up. Kathryn remembers that he ordered squid with ink sauce that few others apparently dared to try. After cross-examining the waiter on exactly how it was prepared. That would be Mark.

    Mark often spoke of his family. What a dynamic, wonderful group you all are. I think everyone might want to see this piece on Ora, whom, like the rest of you, I have never met but want to.\2004\nov\main-features\cover\cover-feature.txt

    Also this, in the Congressional Record, on both Mark and Ora:

    Our thoughts have been with you.

    R. Brooke Lewis
    Arlington, Virginia

  370. EMcCutchan says:

    I’m truly saddened to hear about this tragic loss. Although I never met Dr. Mark Pescovitz, I wish I had. In reading this article, however, I realized his wife Ora was my endocrinologist in the late ’90s. Because of this connection and the fact that I also live in Indianapolis, I attempted to attend the funeral. Even before reaching the synagogue, I was moved by seeing the sheer amount of people in attendance by the fact that there were cars parked along the streets for four blocks in each direction. To know that he touched the lives of this many people is quite amazing. Unfortunately, because I was late, every available parallel parking space was taken and there really was nowhere else legal nor safe for me to park. I am truly very glad that everyone who fought the snowy roads to get there was able to celebrate this man. I definitely wish I had been able to attend with them. I issue my most heartfelt condolences to the entire Pescovitz family.

  371. Anonymous says:

    To the Pescovitz family: I’m so sorry. Mark had such a brilliant intellect housed in such a gentle, funny, and caring soul. Ora and Ari: the Kirkman/Krall family sends much love and sympathy. We are all so sad, yet so grateful for Mark’s vibrant life.
    Sue Kirkman

  372. Anonymous says:

    It is with great saddness I learned of Mark’s death from a mutual friend Joan Lunney. For a brief period in the 1980s we both worked in the area of pig MHC. He was a energetic, friendly and a great young scientist. My condolences to the family, friends and colleagues.
    Max Rothschild
    Iowa State University

  373. Anonymous says:

    Mark, as a great friend and colleague, will be missed by so many – including those of us at NASA with whome he was planning to tackle several diseases (including type 1 diabetes) by use of our technology. Mark was the real brains behind it. We can’t replace that but will press on in his (fabulous) memory. Luckily over years of our discussions we may reconstruct some of his intent. His encouragement kept me going several times and will live forever in our hearts and in the many innovations he inspired. We always lived vicariously through each other.

    Mark’s Friend,
    David Wolf

  374. Anonymous says:

    I had the privilege of meeting your brother about a month ago. I thought then that he was an incredible man. After reading your tribute I am sure that I had the privilege of meeting one of God’s “stellar” creations. When my brother passed away one of his friends said “he lived as much life as God intended him to live”. If all of us could live as your brother did this world would be a much better place.

  375. Anonymous says:

    Attending today’s funeral service I was reminded of the thread that binds us together as a community — love, family, commitment to an ideal, living one’s values. Several people commented on how all facets of Mark came together today in an astonishing reflection of all of his facets. It was a privilege to know Mark (Craig Brater was right in his eulogy. If there’s a world series of poker in heaven, Mark should sit it out. Having been a member of the probabilty seminar for the past six years I can attest to that and thank Mark for contributing so much to the new addition on our house!) Much more importantnly, even in a carefree game of poker he demonstrated the kind of caring we heard about today. Our last game 15 days ago was at Mark’s house and in typical fashion he put out a terrific spread and acted as though we were family, which, I guess in a way we were. Along with all those who spoke this afternoon, and so many more in the audience and around the world, I will miss Mark greatly. He added so much to so many lives….

  376. angelwhisper says:

    The service today for Dr. Mark Pescovitz was very touching, and probably the best memorial service I have ever been to. His sister described Mark the best, I think… as a Rubik’s cube… so many of us were only touched by a “block”, or maybe a whole section.. but there was so much more to him. He touched so many lives.. in so many ways. I am sad I didn’t get to know him better, but feel privileged that I knew him at all. My heart goes out to his wonderful family.

  377. Anonymous says:

    I attended Mark’s funeral today and it was a fitting tribute to a great doctor. I knew little about the man, but I owe my life to the doctor. He performed my liver transplant almost 11 years ago. After nearly 18 hours of surgery, he came to waiting room and spoke to my family and I understand he answered all of their questions, though I am sure he must have been exhausted.
    I learned a few days later that my liver, pre-transplant, was much worse than tests had shown and that the surgery was more difficult. He told me then that he was optomistic and he proved to be right.
    Unlike many patients, after I left the hospital, I did not see him in clinic. I made a number of trips to the OTU over the next few years, just to visit, and on more than a few occasions, Dr. Pescovitz was there. I was thilled and somewhat amazed that each time I saw him, he called me Mr. Passmore, without introduction, and asked how I was feeling. I am but one of a large number of patients he helped and I didn’t feel I made a big impression, but he made feel like I did. He made a lasting impression on me.
    I know I thanked him a thousand times for giving me a second chance at life, but each time I got “I was just the surgeon”. I think he was a whole lot more. I learned a lot about Mark today from his family and I share their loss. Without his skills as a surgeon, I may not be here to share this. For that I am eternally grateful.
    Eric Passmore

  378. Marc says:

    Dear Mark,
    I’m sorry I didn’t have a chance to say goodbye. I knew 2 blocks of your Rubik’s cube, transplant surgery and clinical research. You were an icon in the world of clinical research for CMV disease in transplantation. This is the Mark Pescovitz I knew.
    But at your funeral, I got a chance to see the entire Rubik’s cube (thanks to your sister for the analogy). You were part of an amazing family and you raised your children just the way each of us would aspire to.
    It is obvious from hearing the eloquence of each of your beautiful children that they are a chip off the old block.
    Congratulations my friend, on living a good life.

    Marc E. Uknis, MD FACS
    University of Minnesota Transplant Alum
    ViroPharma, Medical Director

  379. Jeff says:

    My family was blessed with the great fortune of having Dr. Pescovitz perform my son’s kidney transplant almost 12 years ago. It took place on February 10, 1999, the day before his 6th birthday. Over the next several years following the transplant he was cared for during the clinic visits by Dr. Pescovitz or one of the other surgeons, however we always felt completely comfortable after our visits with your brother.

    I have two visits that standout the most in my mind. On one occasion we were discussing how my son was doing and what activities he was in, etc. During the conversation it was mentioned that he would like to continue in Karate but due to the location of the New Kidney we were afraid that a kick to the abdomen would injury the kidney. His response to us was to “let him do whatever he wants to, within reason. If he injures the kidney, I’ll fix it. I didn’t perform this surgery for him to lie around and do nothing. So quit worrying and let him enjoy life and have fun.” We left there truly believing if anything happened that he could fix it and I believe he most likely could have. My son is now a black belt.
    My second memory is of a visit that Dr. Pescovitz asked how I was doing. I was the donor for my son’s transplant. Honestly, no one there had ever asked me how I was doing. I always felt that no one wanted to know if there were side effects to me as a donor. I was honest and told him of the few, minor concerns I had regarding different problems I had encountered after the surgery but didn’t have prior to the surgery. He then took the time to examine me, discussed some things with me and then apologized about the scar I had from the surgery. My scar is approximately 14 inches long and he explained that if we had performed the surgery about a year later I would have had a scar about an inch or two long, similar to that of a cut performed for a C-section birth delivery. His compassion and care for my whole family over the years was truly felt and sincerely appreciated.
    I attended the funeral yesterday and I’m still amazed at the strength of the entire Pescovitz family during this unexpected family and world tragedy. I have been amazed all week at that strength while viewing the interviews with Mrs. Pecovitz and their children. As Mrs. Pescovitz spoke of their final day together and the on-line paying of bills story, my thoughts were about what we will do if my son needs another transplant in the future. I know there are other qualified surgeons and obviously we have meet several of them, but I truly believe we had the best ever and I believe that is why we have had the success we have for almost 12 years.
    I’m still struggling with the loss of Dr. Pescovitz, not so much because of the obvious, but due all of the unnecessary death that is self inflicted throughout the world on a daily basis. So why would someone that devoted everyday of his life to improve the life of others and actually give life, be taken from this world, versus removing one that causes harm to others. As his daughter Naomi stated, this is so unfair. This loss, is to the entire world, for his contributions didn’t just stop here in Indiana or in the U.S.
    I want to thank Dr. Ora Pescovitz, Aliza, Ari and Naomi for sharing their husband and father with all of us so that our lives are better and so that we are able to continue in life together.
    Thank you to the entire Pescovitz family for shring a part of Dr. Pescovitz’s history with us, allowing us to learn more about a man that changed our lives for the better, for its not something, as patients, that we often get the opportunity to see.
    My deepest and most heart felt sympathy and prayers go out to you and your entire family.
    And lastly, to Dr. Pescovitz, thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving my son life again and for everything you did for me and my family.

  380. Indy1530 says:

    David and all in the Pescovitz family,
    I have had a profound quiet sadness since I learned of Mark’s tragic passing. Though I’ve only worked with him for two years, I cannot express in words the indelible mark he has left on me professionally and my heart personally. Over the last few days as I’ve learned more about him, I am so honored to have been able to steal of few moments of this truly incredible person’s day. He taught me so much – and as I sat in his service yesterday, I realized he was still teaching me…I have never been inside a synagogue before. What a amazing tribute to his life and legacy – all the personal stories your family shared with poise and pride were so joyful. May God bless and keep you all.

  381. Anonymous says:

    To the Pescovitz family,
    I had the honor and privilege to come to know Mark over the last few years as a member of the mysterious “Probability Seminar” group, aka poker group. Mark was an enthusiastic member of the group in his usual understated way and made me feel particularly welcome as one of the newer members.

    Mark was always interested in what the others members were “up to” outside their professional lives and he himself would brighten when sharing the exploits of Ora,his children, and his art.

    He will be deeply missed. The many entries above are testimony to the deep tracks he left behind on this earth and impact he had on each of us as a friend, colleague, mentor, physician and human. Peace be with all of you.

  382. Anonymous says:

    Dear David,

    I had the privilege to work with Mark over the past 5-6 years. We served on a Data Monitoring Committee that met once a year and I last saw him in October 2010. I remember him as always friendly but such a multitasker that we seldom had more that two minutes of one-on-one chatting. I was amazed to discover so much about him this week. I am immensely touched — by Mark, by Ora (her website conveys such dignity upon his death, as well as her strength and leadership — Oh! To know her!), and by you. Each path I follow from the initial posting about Mark’s death opens up so many new ideas. One needs many lifetimes to ever gain a sense of them all. As an example of light emerging from darkness, it’s been lovely to connect with all of you at this time. I wish you well.

    ~ Joan

  383. Anonymous says:

    I loved learning about the fact that Dr. Pescovitz was an official Village Elder in Eldorat. Mostly because I always thought of him as a City Elder here in Indianapolis.

    I was always glad to see him in a meeting. First of all, I thought, “Whew, if Mark’s here, then it’s a worthwhile meeting”, and secondly, I knew that he would have something meaningful to say. My last memory of him will be of the smile he brought to my face when he walked into the December 8th, JFGI meeting, and his eloquent comments about the worthiness of the ATID program.

    David, Thank you for sharing and for providing a forum for so many people to share what he meant to them.

  384. Anonymous says:

    A remarkable man, a remarkable funeral. Such great eloquence from so many. Mark will be so greatly missed in our community. Our heartfelt condolences to Ora, the kids and the entire family. His memory will be a blessing to so many in so many places.

    Janet Allen, and Joel Grynheim
    BEZ congregants and local arts supporters

  385. Anonymous says:

    I work at University of Michigan. I was just touched by Mark’s passion for life. My prayers are with him and his family.

  386. Peesquared says:

    To the Pescovitz family:
    I attended Walnut Hills and was in Maxa’s graduating class but remember Mark vividly. (How often do we remember the younger brother of a classmate?) Even then, his photography grabbed your attention, he had a wry/dry sense of humor well beyond his years, and he seemed more comfortable/confident in his own skin than any other teenager I’d ever known. He just seemed wise beyond his years.

    I guess it shouldn’t surprise me that he grew into this AMAZING adult that you, David, and his colleagues have described in these posts. I’m sorry I couldn’t make it down to Indianapolis for the service but please know that my heart goes out to your entire family in this time of shock and loss. I like what Linda Clark-Borre wrote, “Now Mark is everywhere.”

    Patricia Pippert

  387. Anonymous says:

    Mark or “Pesky” as he was known was my high school friend and classmate. Mostly I remember looking up to him, respecting his intellect and talent. His subsequent stellar career success was not suprising to me. I was in class with him the day he was admitted to college and med school (the same day). To say the least I was impressed — and from time to time have bragged about knowing him. I also have other only slightly faded Polaroid memories: Mark taking my picture for the yearbook, visiting your North Avondale home for parties and informal reunions, moments like that. Those fond memories prompted me a few months ago to reach out to him via email — and was pleased that Mark had remembered me after all these years. I was very much looking forward to more rekindling.

    This is a deep, profound loss.


  388. Anonymous says:

    When Mark was at the NIH with David Sachs, he made several monoclonal antibodies that bound to a variety of different white blood cells. On of those antibodies—74-22-15a—turned out to be the ticket for me to figure out the question I was studying for my PhD thesis in Cambridge, England. As a young transplant surgeon, I’d read many papers by Mark Pescovitz, but I had never met him and I looked forward to thanking him for making this antibody. Many years later, on the night I thanked him in a hotel lobby bar at some transplant meeting, I learned that Mark had played a major role in the life of my mentor, Peter Friend. Together they had performed the first pediatric liver transplant in Indiana. After we left, Peter, who is a very stoic Englishman, nearly glowed talking about his fond memories of Mark during his time in Indianapolis. A few years ago I interviewed for a job in the transplant program in Indianapolis. I had the opportunity to interview with Ora and learn something of her many talents. I had no idea until now about the breadth and depth of Mark’s talents. I wish I had taken the time to know him better. I’ve read nearly every entry here in David’s tribute—quite unusual for me as I never take time for this sort of thing. But I couldn’t stop. I felt it fueling the desire to try to suck more of the marrow of life. Carpe diem, quam minime credula postero – “Seize the Day, trusting as little as possible in the future”

    David, thank you for doing for me what Mark did for so many others—taking a tragic situation and finding a way to use it to help others.

    My condolences to you and your family,

    Mike Rees
    Director of Renal Transplantation
    University of Toledo

  389. Anonymous says:

    I was so saddened to hear of Mark’s sudden and untimely death, and my sympathies and wishes go out to all his family, colleagues and friends. I had the enormous pleasure and privilege of working with Mark for many decades as transplantation evolved from an aspiration to a science and from an experiment to a successful therapy. He was a gifted clinian and researcher and a warm and wonderful friend and colleague. I enjoyed the critical input and astute insight that he brought to so many scientific studies and research groups, and his unfailingly warm and enthusiastic company relaxing after the events. We are awaiting news on the acceptance of a last joint publication and it is very sad to think that Mark, who contributed so much to the study, will not enjoy its appearance in press. I will miss him deeply, as I know will his many many friends around the world in the field which he did so much to promote.

    With deepest sadness, Paul Keown

  390. Anonymous says:

    For those of us who were unable to attend the service due to the weather and parking issues, could someone please share some of the eulogies?

  391. Anonymous says:

    Dear Pescovitz family- I was so very saddened to hear of Mark’s death and my sincere condolensces to all!! Mark and I were classmates at Walnut and I have many fond memories of working with him in our shared math and science classes- I have always been in awe of his gentle modesty in spite of his incredible brilliance and so respect all of his accomplishments (as a lowly Internist!!) in the transplant field. My late husband was a renal transplant recipient- and I too have experienced the tragedy of an accidental death of a loved one when he was killed 6 yrs ago.
    I’m not sure if Ora will remember me, but years ago my late husband and I had lunch with Mark and her in Minneapolis while visiting our fellow classmate and my dear friend Karen Lear Hamity- but Ora if you would possibly be comforted by speaking with someone who has suffered a similar sudden loss, please feel free to call or email me!
    My thoughts are with you all!! Mindy Fine Hastie

  392. lindaadele goodine says:

    Who was this man standing outside my lecture room? He didn’t look much like an art student to me.
    This was how I met him. And for three or four years I would sight him, just outside the door with a mischievous grin on his face. He wanted something from me; my guess was some of the magic that goes into art making. Little did I know that he was in fact a great surgeon and research faculty, one of my colleagues from across the street. He wanted insight. He needed to satiate his enormous curiosity.
    Mark already knew the camera and understood the frame. What was all the fuss over this concept of the gaze? He worked with it every time he pushed his shutter in every country he visited. Still I gave him a tough critique, and he knew there was more work to be done. The magnitude of his life seemed less apparent to me then because he was such a humble man. I invited him to join my lectures, but his surgery schedule always conflicted. I sent him articles to read and books to look at until he could find the time to get into a class. I anticipated our future conversations like I did a chocolate tart. This year, while I left for sabbatical, I knew he was ready, and so I sent him to one of the best teachers at Herron, Lamar Richcreek. Your dad studied photography with undergraduate art students, he encouraged our graduate students, he advised our gallery director. He was one of us. He was an artist. Linda adele goodine

  393. Anonymous says:

    I join with so many others in admiring Mark and his many accomplishments. I first met him at a Transplant meeting and we shared a cab to the airport. He shared his perspectives with me and how he worked to keep everything in balance. He encouraged me to remember that there is a life outside of medicine. He has helped me immeasurably in my career and always thought of others. His commitment to family, 2 careers and mentoring of others was something that one does not encounter often in the world of academic medicine. Our world is a better place for Mark having been in it.
    Yolanda Becker

  394. Anonymous says:

    My sympathies to the entire family, his friends, patients and colleagues. My interaction with Mark underscored what has already been said, he was a man of quite dignity. Mark’s life is a beacon for all of us to follow. Our community will greatly miss Mark. JK

  395. Anonymous says:

    I would like to convey my condolences to the entire Pescovitz family. Mark was a truly great man and the world is a darker place without him.

    –Josh Flaumenhaft

  396. Anonymous says:

    While working the phones on Super Sunday two years ago. Mark sat down next to me with my donation card and said we need to talk. I was relatively new to philanthropy and just asked Mark what he wanted. He said it’s not for him to tell me what to donate. I asked again, just give me a number and I’ll do it. No, Doc wouldn’t let me off that easy. He walked me through the thought process so I could come to a figure on my own. It’s never easy asking someone for money, but he taught me then you don’t have to. Just explain the criteria they should consider when donating. Thank you Doc.

  397. Anonymous says:

    To #397:

    Please: What is it that Mark said to you about charitable giving? I think many of us who have posted here, and who loved the way his mind worked, would like to know that.

  398. Anonymous says:

    Hi David – I had been about to email you and ask if I could have permission to use your brother’s Hot Beef photos from the Indiana State Fair for my book about brisket. And I had had a short email correspondence with you a few months ago. So I was shocked to hear about your brother. What a wonderful, touching, loving tribute to him. And what a fine man he was. I am so sorry for your incredible tragic loss. He should have lived forever. All best, Stevie Pierson

  399. Anonymous says:

    To the Pescovitz family,

    I want to extend my condolences to you on Mark’s tragic death. From our Rosehill Avenue days, WHHS, and during Mark’s two years in Evanston, I was always amazed at Mark’s brilliance and talent.

    The last time I saw Mark was very coincidental…in the late 1980’s, I walked into my hospital, then Cleveland Metro General (where I was a surgical intensivist), went by the OR suite to check out the SICU admissions for the day, and out walked Mark from the OR! He had flown in to Cleveland for an organ recovery from one of our donors. Of course, he had to rush out and we only had a few minutes to talk, but it was great to see him after so many years! Unfortunately our paths did not cross again since, but I’ve quickly learned about his remarkable professional and community accomplishments from the hundreds of posts and articles in the past week.

    As I’m sure it was for others, I felt compelled to call old WHHS friends last week (some of whom I haven’t had a chance to speak with in years), just to reminisce about Mark. My surgical colleagues who spent time at IU, and those in the transplant field in Cleveland who knew Mark, also share in the sadness of his loss.

    Joel R. Peerless
    Beachwood, Ohio

  400. Anonymous says:

    I am praying for you and your brother’s family. I know several people who know your brother and his wife from Riley Hospital and have heard wonderful things about their work and them.

  401. Jameson says:

    Thank you for sharing your brother’s amazing life journey, David. Mark lives on through the contributions he has made, through your moving tribute, and mostly through his blessed family. My sincere condolences to you, Ora, their children, and all those fortunate enough to have known such an inspiring and truly gifted individual…

  402. Koech K Mathew says:

    I am very sorry for the loss of Dr Pescovitz.
    I am one of those who had the opportunity of meeting Dr Pescovitz in Eldoret, Kenya. He came yearly to conduct kidney transplants at the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital where I work as a doctor at the renal unit. I met him in 2008, and I was amazed at how humble, nice and loving a man of such stature could be. He is a blessing to all of us here. We are going to miss him so much, I know it’s only the Lord who knows why we had to lose him but it’s hard to understand.
    Be strong as a family, know that in Kenya we bless you always.

  403. Anonymous says:

    I am sorry as well.

    It’s always hard when someone moves on, but especially hard when they are so admirable.

    Your post, and your brother, have inspired me to do more with my life.

  404. faithmanon says:

    Baruch dayan emet, David. And peace be with you and your family.

  405. Rick Pescovitz says:


    Mark’s brother Rick here. Thank you again for all of these comments. The best way for me to move forward is by reading about the people who’s lives he touched.

    It’s incredible to hear from all of you. My memories are quite different. I remember Mark as the guy that was ALWAYS able to help me with my homework. Chemistry, Biology, Calculus, History… It didn’t matter. I’m 8 years younger, so he was already out of college, yet he STILL knew it all!

    I am going to start a scholarship in his name at Walnut Hills High School in Cincinnati, where Mark graduated in 1973. Mark’s name is very well known in Cincinnati, where he spent his first 18 years. My goal is for this scholarship to be awarded to an EXCELLENT underprivileged student who aspires to have a career in medicine. Maybe I’m living a pipe dream, but my hope is to have this grow large enough to eventually be able to fund at least one student’s entire undergrad education every year. Please let me know if you would be interested in participating. I do not need any financial commitments yet, just a “YES” if you think you would like to participate. I will have the foundation created in early ’11.

    Please email me at

    Thank you again.

  406. Anonymous says:

    For the person who asked about the eulogies – if you go to and search for Mark Pescovitz you will find the eulogies.

  407. David Pescovitz says:

    I linked to the eulogies at the bottom of the post above… My brothers and I didn’t write ours down, but perhaps at some point we will. Thank you all.

  408. Anonymous says:

    hi david,

    dunno if you’ll read this or not, but right before i foundd this on my google reader -i just got into a huge fight with my younger brother. we recently started living together, the first time since we lived back home with our parents -we’re now in our late twenties.

    im sorry for your loss, your bro was a genuine human being to the fullest. i’ll try my best to be a better bigger brother because of him.

    thank you,

  409. Caroline says:

    Thank you for sharing yours story of your remarkable brother, it is people like your brother, who don’t make the front pages of the newspapers but who give so much of themselves to help others. I am so sorry for your loss, but your memories and his contribution to this world will live forever.

  410. Anonymous says:

    I have known Mark and Ora over the years both as consultants to the filed of transplant management, and as friends in the community supporting the arts- the opera and the violin competition, and as sushi fans too. It seems they were everywhere we went. I am so sorry for your loss and thank you for your elegant tribute to your brother. He was a remarkable man and his love of family and Jewish values were always evident.

    Laura Mendelsohn

  411. Zach Kleiman says:

    Dr P always came into the Jewish Community Center to swim before, I imagine, heading into work. I was grateful to be the lifeguard in the early mornings during the summer because every once in a while, he would talk to me after what seemed like every lap he swam. He would ask how my family wa doing and how my studies were progressing. When i was younger, i knew 2 doctors in my life, my father and Dr P. Whenever i needed to interview a doctor for a paper, he would be the one who i would call. I remember interviewing him about how to become a transplant surgeon. I was so nervous before i made the phone call, but my father reassured me that Dr P would give me ALL the information i needed. He didnt know the half of it. When i finally did call, Dr P would enthusiastic, compassionate, and informative. He could sense my apprehension, but instead turned it into excitement. I could honestly tell that he was excited to speak to me about what he did. He is a reason why I am now in medical school, just 2 years away from becoming a physician. Thank you Dr P for all the wisdom you gave me over the years… both on the phone and in between laps of freestyle and kickboard excercises. You will be missed. The entire Kleiman family sends its prayers and best wishes to the Pescovitz family and to all who had the opportunity to meet him.

  412. YESnack says:

    Really moving… Why is beauty so fleeting? Your brother lives through his children and the stories that you have shared with us. Continue to share with passion and love the life he lead. Peace

  413. Anonymous says:

    Ode to Our Beloved Cousin Mark Pescovitz
    By Viviane

    Time is always running
    Too fast like the waters
    Of a river whose currents
    Takes life and memories away
    To distant shores,
    Where we can’t anchor anymore.

    To Ora & Family & Maxa & The Pescovitz Family
    Our Deepest Sympathy
    Cousins Irwin & Viviane

  414. Anonymous says:

    Our memories of Mark and Ora relate to their childrens’ preschool days. They always came together to any of their childrens’ activities….if we needed anything, as teachers, they provided it immediately. They were wonderful parents. And, their children turned out to be very successful. Blessings and love to a very first class family…..with love, Fran Seyer and Beth Grimm, JCC

  415. Anonymous says:

    I worked with Mark at the NIH for a couple of years. He was a remarkable man. I just learned of his passing. We will miss him.

  416. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for devide this beautiful story with us, David. You were very generous. My deepest condolences. Ruy

  417. cousinpamelala says:

    It is new Years’ day, and all that I can think about, and have been thinking about for 3 weeks is my cousin, Mark. Where he is right now, and what he must be thinking. I am also thinking of Ora, and of course the the kids, Aliza, Ari, and Naomi. In the back of my mind I know that the kids will be ok. I lost my father (Marks Uncle Jack) when I was 19, and somehow with the help of my mother (Marks Aunt Myrna) and my brother, Rich and Sister, Ellen we all managed to go on to live successful and happy lives. I am sure that Ora will be sure of that, with her children.
    I then start thinking about my other cousins, Maxa, Bobby, Michael, Charles, Ricky, and of course you, David. David and I are the closest in age, and always got in all kinds of “fun” trouble together when my family would spend most of our summers in Cincinnati on Rose Hill Ave. We went there in the summers because my mother, Myrna and Marks mother, Anita were sisters. They were inseparable. I remember every free moment my mother had ,she was on the phone with Aunt Anita! We lived in Philadelphia, and long distance rates didn’t apply when the two of them were giggling on the phone. Most of all, the sense of family that the Pescovitz’s had was wonderful. I was always in awe of how there are so many kids in that house, and that’s what makes it so hard for me to understand this. I can’t imagine what it must feel like for all of you to lose a sibling, a brother. We all lost our parents way to soon. I guess we can get a little solice from knowing they are all together, and mom and Aunt Anita are together chatting away next to dad, and Uncle Harold.
    Losing a brother? A sibling? This is from our own generation and way to early. I remember Mark bringing me into his dark room in the basement. He would show me how to develop film. I acted like I was interested, but I just wanted to be around him. I looked up to him, and I wanted to become interested in all of the things that he was interested in. I remember him running down the turned stairway calling my name, “Pamelala” he would call me.I bragged about him and Ora whenever the conversation allowed.
    As we all have grown into adults living our lives all over the country, Mark called me when he recieved the invitation to my sons’ Bar Mitzvah. He wanted to know timing because he and Ora wanted to come in to Phila for it. It was on a Sunday, and he was receiving and award that Sat evening before in Indianapolis. However, He and Ora wanted to be there, and they flew in for the day! I was so happy. How amazing is that? I have another son being Bar Mitzvah later this year, and my husband and I were discussing a few weeks ago how we don’t have much family, and I said well, hopefully Mark and Ora will be able to make it again. I guess that won’t be the case now.
    I just wanted to let all of my cousins know that I am thinking of you all the time. Even though we are all over the country, all of my memories are still strong in my mind. I hope that Anita, Harold, Myrna, Jack and now Mark are all finding peace together.

    ~ Cousin Pam Philadelphia

  418. Anonymous says:

    Dear Pescovitz Family, I was deeply saddened and shocked to hear the news of Mark’s passing. He was truly a phenomenal member of the transplant community, both with respect to his research and clinical work, and also what an exceptionally fine person he was. He was very kind and encouraging to me when I was first starting out in transplant infectious disease, and had a wonderful quality with which he made each person feel that their contributions were worthwhile. His humility was remarkable considering his depth of knowledge and experience. He added so much to all of our knowledge of viral infections and their treatment, and yet he was always ready to listen to other points of view. For myself and many others, he has been the model of a physician-scientist. My sincerest sympathies go out to you, his family members. Yours, Robin Avery MD, Department of Infectious Disease, Cleveland Clinic

  419. Anonymous says:

    I join Cousin Pamela in the warm remembrances I have of Mark and his friendly brothers and sister Maxa: a joyful bunch running around and up and down their beautiful Victorian Mansion on Rosehill ave in Cincinnati.
    Harold & Anita always greeting us with smiles and laughter. The house adorned with lovely paintings(some of Anita’s artwork). The dining-room always set with sparkling crystalware for family banquets. The mood: Happy!
    Our daughter Michele had so much fun at the many Bar-Mitzvahs and Weddings. We were thrilled when we met Ora at their wedding. Later on very happy when two of their children were born in Maryland and we were able to participate in their Joy!
    Mark will go on living in our memories!
    To Ora and Family & The Pescovitz Family:
    We send Our Deepest Sympathy & Love
    Viviane & Irwin Pescov & Family

  420. Anonymous says:

    To the entire Pescovitz Family: I am sorry to be writing this so late after the fact, but I live overseas and I only just heard about Mark’s tragic death yesterday. It made me so sad. I didn’t know Mark well, but I do remember seeing him during the many times I played at your house on Rose Hill. I was in awe of him and initially, a little bit scared of him; he was so big and I was so little. But he was extremely kind and tolerant of me and the all other little kids running around the house. I do remember that he was always tinkering with something.
    As you may or may not know, I too, became a physician and had the pleasure of doing anesthesia for some of your dad’s cases when I was working at the old Jewish Hospital on Burnet Ave. He was a lovely man and sometimes we would talk about the old neighborhood and the old days. (Only after the patient was asleep! ) He was very proud of all his kids and I remember him talking about Mark. So much love and nachas he got from his children. In one of the eulogies I read, someone said that Mark was very much like your dad. If that is so, then his death is truly a great loss to the world. May his memory be a blessing to you all and may his memory bring you comfort. Please know how truly sorry I am for your loss. Best wishes to all of you, Rachel Greengus Schultz

  421. Rachel Paul says:

    A life that was truly lived to the fullest. My condolences to you and your family. It sounds as if you lost a great spirit, but one who enriched the lives of those he encountered. May he rest in peace.

  422. Anonymous says:

    I met Mark in 1977 while he was a medical student (playing the violin, a Renaissance man in his youth, too) at Northwestern and I was the medical school librarian. While we hadn’t seen each other in a long while, we had never been out of touch in those 33 years. Through the years I heard first about his parents and siblings (was James Levine your babysitter, truly?) then Ora (I missed their wedding but have been able to remember milestone anniversaries through the many years) and then the “children”, Aliza, Ari and Naomi.

    I remember when he sent me reprints of his first published papers and research. He was modest but rightly proud and I was honored to cheer his accomplishments. Later he sent news of Ora, the siblings (when Boing Boing was created, when Robert was in a show…I got to see you on TV, Bob, and you look like Mark, when Maxa moved to Florida, when nieces and nephews appeared) and of his and Ora’s children. I am a slow adopter of technology but in recent years have been able to see Mark’s photos as well as some of Ari’s work, Naomi’s broadcasts and to enjoy the news of Aliza’s various successes.

    I’m older than Mark but a late mom (my daughter is now 17) and he always offered encouragement and support in my parenting experiences…most often with a tale or 2 of his own to help me understand I was not alone. He traveled so widely yet was available for a quick e-mail or call. He always checked in on my husband’s health and my stress level. I remembered his birthday and he remembered I loved Halloween. We last spoke the week before his tragic death. I heard about your Arizona Thanksgiving and the planned trip to SF to see Ari. He treasured his time with all of his family and looked forward to a few quiet days with Ora at home in Indiana in late December.

    When I learned of my dear friend’s death I was shocked and broken hearted. I know the shock will ease and the heart will heal (but with a scar with his name on it) but I also know I will miss him forever. My heart is with all of the many who mourn him. Thank you for sharing such powerful stories on this site. Mark would be amazed, yet proud again that his brother David had created a space where we could do so.

    Rikki Horne, Ojai, CA

  423. kerryjes says:

    Dear Pescovitz family,

    My name is Kerry Jessup, and I was a classmate of Mark’s in the photography class he took last semester at Herron. I wanted to contact you earlier, but I’ve been having trouble coming up with the right words to say.

    Despite the brief amount of time I spent with Mark, I was deeply affected by his death. Over Christmas break I came to the photo lab to collect some things I’d forgotten, and I found the color darkroom Mark had used in our class. These small, light-tight rooms contain only a color enlarger and some drawers for our paper and prints. Because we had to share one with several other students, we wrote our names on a piece of tape and stuck it next to the door. Mark simply wrote MARK in plain, nondescript scrawl. I was struck suddenly by the fact that my classmates, professor and I had called Mark by his first name. I knew that he was a doctor of some sort, but until his funeral I had no idea that he was such an important figure in the medical community.

    Mark and a man named Brian were the only two returning students in our class; the rest of us were between the ages of 20-24. Brian wondered allowed where Mark was on the last day of class, he was telling a joke that he said only the other “old guy” would understand. Several hours later we received e-mails from our professor telling us about the accident.

    Jessica, another classmate of Mark’s, attended his funeral with me, although like typical art students, we were running late and had to sit in the very back of the synagogue where we couldn’t see you as you spoke, but we still heard your inspiring words. We held hands and cried when Ari described his hike with his father through the desert outside Tuscon, while Mark shot his final project. As you probably know, it was group project, and Jessica, Mark and I were a group.

    Our assignment was to play a Surrealist game called the “exquisite corpse,” in which a sentence is jointly created by a small group of people. I was instructed to choose two adjectives, Jessica picked two nouns, and Mark got to choose the single verb. We were given newspapers and told to select our words from anywhere within their pages. Mark chose the verb “squash” from the title of an article about the vegetable squash. Strung together awkwardly, our sentence was: The ethnic city squashes the natural music. Mark’s final prints of the Tuscan skyline growing smaller and smaller were right on, and he had a successful final critique.

    I will miss Mark, and I cannot even begin to imagine the loss your family is going through. I feel honored that I knew Mark and took a class with him. I didn’t know him as a scientist, a doctor, a philanthropist, a brother, a husband, a father, or a close friend. However, the Mark I did know was a talented photographer and a warm, gregarious person. If any of you are ever visiting Herron, come down to the photography department in the basement and ask around. You will find that Mark touched every single person he knew here.


    Kerry Jessup

  424. Anonymous says:

    People whom I admire and who should have ruled the world!
    Noel from IU

  425. Anonymous says:

    At any transplant meeting Dr. Pescovitz was one of the highlights on my schedule: up-to-date, bright, passionate, humorous. I am deeply shocked and saddened. What a loss! What a pity!
    My sincere condoleances to family and friends.
    Mihai O

  426. Anonymous says:

    what an articulate and sweet tribute to your brother; he has created quite a legacy that will no doubt live on thru his children. my condolences.

  427. Anonymous says:

    I’m sorry I’m just seeing this. It’s dizzying to see how much he fit into a short time span. What a remarkable legacy to leave behind. You must all be so proud.

  428. Anonymous says:

    Remembering Mark on his birthday, as he so kindly remembered others on theirs, without fail.

  429. Anonymous says:

    Happy birthday dad, you are missed more than one could imagine.

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