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Obituary of Herbert Proudfit III
Herbert Kerr Proudfit, III departed this earth on October 27, 2017 after a two-year fight with pancreatic cancer.
Herb received his B.S. in Psychology and Ph.D. in Pharmacology from the University of Kansas. Herb was ever grateful for the opportunity that Dr. Stata Norton provided him to work in her laboratory, despite a “dappled” undergraduate performance, and ultimately to enter the pharmacology graduate program at Kansas. After post-doctoral training at the University of Illinois at Chicago, he transitioned to the faculty track and ultimately obtained the rank of Professor. His research included early seminal studies of the role of bulbospinal projections in the modulation of pain, studies that continued until his retirement. In 2000, he joined the faculty at the University of Iowa as Professor of Pharmacology to continue his research with other scientists interested in the neurobiology of pain.
Herb’s love of science – any kind of science – was evident early in life. As a child, one experiment in the basement resulted in an explosion that necessitated a visit by the fire department. A voracious reader, Herb’s library spanned topics from astronomy to zoology to philosophy and politics.
In retirement, he returned to photography as a creative outlet. He particularly enjoyed the friendships he made with members of the Iowa City Camera Club, a lively group of highly talented photographers. His prints won many awards, and he was most proud of those he received during the annual conventions of the North Central Camera Club Council in the categories of creative print, color print, black and white print, and nature prints.
Herb is survived by his beloved wife of 34 years, Donna L. Hammond, and his treasured daughter, Amanda Ridlington (Greg). He loved his three raucous grandsons Jesse, Judah and Jonah, and is grateful to his previous wife Carol Proudfit for her continued friendship. Herb was preceded in death by his mother and father.
His family appreciates the amazing care provided by Drs. Daniel Berg, Frederick Johlin, John Buatti, Rebecca Davis, and the nursing staff of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. The staff of Hospice Compassus including Kate, Nancy, Dwayne, and especially Wayne and Paul, provided strong support that was most welcome. Finally, the two-year journey was eased by the outpouring of love and support from friends and colleagues – too many to name, but each close to our hearts.
Private family services will be held through Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service in Iowa City. Services celebrating Herb’s life with his family and friends will be held at a later date to be announced. Memorial donations can be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network or the Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center.