Dear CIS Colleagues,
It is with deep regret and sadness that I write to inform you about the recent passing of Dr. William (Bill) Shearer, which is news several of you may have already heard about from other sources. Bill Shearer, MD, PhD was one of the towering figures in our field of clinical immunology and primary immunodeficiencies. Bill was a member of CIS for 25 years, and President from 2001-2002. He attended almost every CIS meeting from the time it started, and always had a line of attendees waiting to speak with him. He was an outstanding teacher, mentor, and leader in immunology.
One could quite easily write a book on the life and accomplishments of Bill, but in summary, he was the founder and former Chief of the Allergy and Immunology Service at Texas Children’s Hospital, and Professor of Pediatrics and Immunology at Baylor College of Medicine. He was most famous for his care of David “The Bubble Boy” Vetter in 1979, which led to revolutionary immunological discoveries. He graduated from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis in 1970, and published more than 400 journal articles and 86 book chapters over his career. He was the Chief Editor for Clinical Immunology: Principles and Practice, and an Associate Editor for Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology for 15 years. He received numerous awards, continuous funding from the NIH for 40 years, and was active in many professional organizations. He was polished and impeccable in his professional interactions, and set a high standard for others to follow.
Our deepest condolences go out to his wife, Lynn, and their family. He is already greatly missed by the vast number of patients and colleagues whose lives he touched over his many years. CIS will be making a donation in his honor to the David Memorial Fund, which was created as a tribute to David Vetter.
While we bid farewell to a man who has inspired all of us, his many contributions to our field will not be forgotten, and we are all grateful for the opportunity to have known and/or worked with him, for a short or long time.
Roshini S. Abraham, PhD