On March 28, Mae Gelb of Scranton, Pennsylvania, celebrated her 100th birthday with close friends and family, including her nephew, Herbert E. Cohn, MD, Anthony Narducci Professor and Vice Chair of Surgery, Jefferson. Mrs. Gelb's life has been nearly as healthy as it is long. Aside from giving birth, her only experience as an inpatient was when, in October 1993, at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, she underwent a major operation performed by then-Samuel D. Gross Professor and Chair of Surgery Francis E. Rosato, MD, with moral support from Dr. Cohn. "So many physicians I know have been taught by Herb." "Although I didn’t have cancer, I felt quite ill," Mrs. Gelb recalls. "My doctor in Scranton – who Herb had once taught – contacted Herb, who said, 'Get her down to Jefferson by ambulance tomorrow morning!' I was frightened out of my wits, but Herb was waiting for me when the ambulance arrived, and I had my surgery almost immediately. Herb observed as Dr. Rosato performed the procedure. Both of them were wonderful." In January 1994, Mrs. Gelb was able to resume her active schedule of charitable and civic work. She has made generous donations to organizations ranging from Hadassah to Jefferson, through the Gelb Foundation, founded by her late husband, attorney Morris B. Gelb. "Morris emigrated from Hungary to the United States in 1912, when he was 8 years old," Mrs. Gelb says. "Although his family was poor, he worked hard and graduated in 1929 from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. He couldn't wait to pay back the world for his good fortune." Now overseen by Mrs. Gelb's daughters and sons-in-law, Sondra and Morey Myers and Beverly and Jerry Klein, the Gelb Foundation donated generously to the Department of Surgery's Herbert E. Cohn, MD, Residents' Library for the purchase of computers and educational materials, as well as to the Jefferson Breast Care Center, out of gratitude for the care Mrs. Gelb received as well as family pride in Dr. Cohn. "So many physicians I know have been taught by Herb, and so many people I know have been helped by him," Mrs. Gelb declares. "He’s a fine, charming man with a big heart!" To make a gift to the Department of Surgery, please contact Diane Calder at 215-955-4126 or Diane.Calder@Jefferson.edu
"Honoring Dr. Herbert Cohn,"
Jefferson Surgical Solutions: Vol. 1
, Article 8.
Available at: http://jdc.jefferson.edu/jss/vol1/iss1/8