College of American Pathologists
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In memoriam:
Edwin B. Herring, MD, 1922-2003

May 2004

Former CAP governor Edwin B. Herring, MD, died March 8. He was 81.

Dr. Herring was a governor of the College from 1981 to 1984 and a member of the House of Delegates from 1976 to 1981. He served on numerous committees and commissions of the College in the 1970s and 1980s, including House Steering, Budget Planning and Review, and Government Relations and Liaison. Dr. Herring retired in 1993 as director emeritus of laboratories at Presbyterian Hospital, Albuquerque, NM, where he served as director from 1965 to 1982.

Born in Arkansas, Dr. Herring attended college in Tennessee and received his medical degree from the University of Tennessee College of Medicine in 1948. He moved to New Mexico a few years after beginning his practice.

"He was a very gentle, very polite person—a real consummate southern gentleman," says CAP governor Andrew E. Horvath, MD, who was hired by Dr. Herring in 1972 to join the private practice founded by Dr. Herring (now named Pathology Associates of Albuquerque). "He listened to everybody. He managed to create the largest, most successful pathology group in the state."

In the medical malpractice crisis of the early 1970s, when physicians in several states, including New Mexico, had problems obtaining malpractice insurance, Dr. Herring was instrumental in forming the New Mexico Physician's Mutual Liability Company, which offered insurance to individual physicians. "He was serving more than just the pathologists, but the whole physician community," Dr. Horvath says. The company was later merged with similar state organizations to form the American Physicians Assurance Corp.

Upon retiring, Dr. Herring traveled often. Dr. Horvath, chief of pathology at Presbyterian Hospital, recalls one incident in which Dr. Herring was in Beijing and developed an incarcerated hiatal hernia. "He self-diagnosed, hopped on a plane, flew right back to Albuquerque, and went directly from the airport to the OR [at Presbyterian]," says Dr. Horvath. "That saved his life."

Dr. Herring was active within the American Society for Clinical Pathology and served as secretary-treasurer and president of the New Mexico Society of Pathologists.

He is survived by his wife, Mary; sons Edwin, William, and John; daughter Nancy; and five grandchildren.