Rash's Surname Index

Notes for Henry Pancoast PENDERGRASS

Main Line Life (Ardmore, PA) - Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Deceased Name: Henry Pancoast Pendergrass
Henry Pancoast Pendergrass, 83, M.D., M.P.H., a nationally honored radiologist and educator who resided at Waverly Heights in Gladwyne, died of respiratory failure on Sunday, Sept. 21, at Bryn Mawr Hospital. Born in Bryn Mawr, Dr. Pendergrass was the son of the late Dr. Eugene Percival Pendergrass and Rebecca Barker Pendergrass and followed his father, who was known as the "Father of American Radiology into a lifelong career of medical service, education and scientific inquiry.

Graduating from the Haverford School in 1943 during World War II, Dr. Pendergrass matriculated to the United States Naval Academy but with the ending of hostilities transferred to and earned his undergraduate degree from Princeton. He went on to obtain his medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania and subsequently joined the staff of the Department of Radiology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

In 1958 Dr. Pendergrass accepted an appointment to the faculty of the Harvard Medical School and joined the Department of Radiology at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. During this period he was awarded a National Institutes of Health Fellowship that supported a neuroradiology fellowship at Queen Square Neurological Institute of London and a Masters Degree from the Harvard School of Public Health.

Dr. Pendergrass married the former Carol Lowe Dodson in 1960 and had four daughters. In 1976, Dr. Pendergrass and his family moved to Nashville, Tenn. and began a twenty year association with the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine as a professor and Vice-Chairman of the Department of Radiology. Tragically in 1993, his wife and two of his daughters, Lisa Johnson and Sharon Batey, were accidentally killed in a hot ballooning accident near Aspen, Colo. In 1995, Dr. Pendergrass was granted emeritus status at Vanderbilt and the first endowed Chair in the Department of Radiology was named in honor of his late wife and Dr. Pendergrass. At that time Dr. Pendergrass was appointed an Adjunct Professor of Radiology at the University of Pennsylvania.

Active throughout his career in numerous medical, educational and research programs, Dr. Pendergrass published over fifty reviewed papers and multiple articles on all facets of the practice of radiology. Some of the work of which he was most proud was highlighted in a New England Journal of Medicine article he authored entitled "The Widening Scope of American Medical Missions" about his work in Peru aboard the medical mission ship, S.S. Hope.

In recognition of his professional achievement he was honored with numerous awards including the highest given by the radiology Society of North America, of which he is a past President, the American College of Radiology, and culminating with the American Medical Association Gold Medal for Distinguished Service.

The feelings for Dr. Pendergrass in the Radiology community are best summarized by Dr. Kay Vydareny, a Professor of Radiology at Emory University, who described him as "a peer model for professionalism, integrity and work ethic as it relates to the practice of radiology, the education of radiology and the pursuit of excellence in radiology research."

After becoming reacquainted with his high school friend, Carol Minster Roberts, they were subsequently married and enjoyed a wonderful second marriage filled with trips to see their family, travel to various medical meetings and around the world and summers in Maine.

Dr. Pendergrass is survived by his wife, his daughters from his first marriage, Deborah Reaves and Margaret Sanders, his stepchildren, Yardley Roberts Jenkins, James Paxton Roberts, Frank Calvin Roberts, five grandchildren, Charles Alexander Batey, Jordan Elizabeth Batey, Christopher Townsend Juberg, Henry Pendergrass Sanders, Evan Elizabeth Sanders and three step grandchildren, Katherine Elizabeth Jenkins, Sarah Yardly Jenkins and Miles Henry Roberts. Dr. Pendergrass was a member of the Merion Golf Club and the Merion Cricket Club and throughout his life enjoyed playing golf and, most particularly, skiing with his family.

A Memorial Service was held on Friday, Sept. 26, 2008 at the Bryn Mawr Presbyterian Church in Bryn Mawr. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are suggested to be sent to the Radiology Society of North America Research & Education Foundation, 820 Jorie Boulevard, Oak Brook, IL 60523-2251 of which Dr. Pendergrass was a Founding Trustee.

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