In the spring of 1987, nearly 350 individuals gathered in a hotel in Bethesda, Maryland, just outside of Washington, D. C. , to participate in a two-day medical symposium devoted to the topic of liver diseases. A small minority of this group had been attracted by what promised to be an outstanding Continuing Medical Education course. The remainder, however, although obviously interested in the content of the symposium, had come primarily to honor a man who, over the years, had profoundly touched them, personally or professionally, for the course had been conceived as a tribute to an exceptional man of medicine, a man with remarkable scholarly and personal attributes: Hyman J. Zimmerman. Dr. Zimmerman, referred to affectionately by all as Hy, was born in 1914 in Rochester, New York, the city in which he received both his early schooling and his undergraduate education. In the late 1930s, he moved to Palo Alto to begin his medical education at Stanford University, from which he graduated cum laude in 1942, having spent an additional year acquiring a masters degree and as World War II in bacteriology. Almost immediately thereafter, he entered military service, was in progress, was assigned to duty in France. Soon after his arrival, he was made chief of an Army field hospital. A major medical problem plaguing U. S. troops at the time was viral hepatitis, which resulted in a deluge of patients admitted to his hospital.
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