1929 - 2022
Martin David Lidsky MD, age 93, of Houston, Texas, passed away peacefully on October 28, 2022. He fell in love with a brilliant and extraordinary woman, Elaine Judith Schwartz, at a dance while they both worked as camp counselors at Silver Birch Camp in the Berkshire Mountains. They were married for 66 years until Elaine’s passing in 2019.
Martin was born in Brooklyn, New York to Gertrude and Leo Lidsky. He earned his undergraduate and medical degrees from George Washington University and completed his residency and internship at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn. In 1956, Martin entered the United States Army and served as a Captain and Physician at Ft. Devens Army Base in Massachusetts. After his service in the Army, Martin continued his medical training for five years at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota where he completed his fellowship in Internal Medicine and performed research in Rheumatology and Biochemistry.
In 1963, Martin and Elaine with four young children moved to Houston, Texas when he accepted a position at the Veterans Administration Medical Center. At the same time, he also began his distinguished career at Baylor College of Medicine where he thrived as teacher and mentor to hundreds of medical students, residents and fellows. He held positions as Instructor, Assistant Professor then Associate Professor of Medicine, and Acting Head of Rheumatology. He also had a private practice at Baylor College of Medicine, and was an Assistant and then Associate Attending Physician at Ben Taub General Hospital. He spent his career at the VA Medical Center in Houston as Physician, and then Chief of Rheumatology. Recently a former student praised Martin as “One of the true giants of teaching at Baylor”.
Even though Martin officially retired from the Houston VA in 2012, he stayed on in a volunteer capacity as Physician Emeritus to continue his passion for training residents and patient care until 2017.
Martin was known as a brilliant and astute diagnostician. He put his patients first and foremost, taking the time to focus on a comprehensive medical history and precise physical examination. A colleague recently said “Although we had different specialties, he always was available and willing to teach and see my patients when needed. A true example of professionalism and altruism on top of excellence in his field”.
Martin was truly an academic physician evidenced by his contribution to over sixty publications. During his career, Martin received numerous awards and honors from Baylor College of Medicine such as Outstanding Dedication and Achievement Award from Medical Residents and multiple awards for Outstanding Teaching from the Department of Internal Medicine. He was cited repeatedly as a “Top Doc” in various publications as well as a “Texas Super Doc” in an issue of Texas Monthly magazine. Martin served as President of The Texas Rheumatism Association from 1978-1979.
Dr. Martin Lidsky leaves a lasting contribution in the science of Rheumatology and a legacy for high quality and compassionate patient care achieved over a sixty year career as a physician.
In addition to his lifelong medical career, Martin was devoted to his family. For fun, Martin loved playing basketball, tennis and ping pong with a competitive spirit. He was a lefty and in ping pong could hit a fierce curve ball that was unstoppable. He was forever entertaining with his stories and lived his life with great purpose.
Martin will be lovingly remembered by his children, Jody Lidsky, Karen (Lidsky) Flanigan, Alan Lidsky, Brian Lidsky, grandchildren, Hayley Flanigan, Benjamin Lidsky, Isabel Lidsky and sister, Brenda Solomon.
In honor of Martin and Elaine, donations can be made to Congregation Brith Shalom (brithshalom.org), Jewish Family Service Houston (jfshouston.org) or The Multiple System Atrophy Coalition (multiplesystematrophy.org).