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Klaus Wilhelm Rudolf Richard Hans Berblinger
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Birth: Sep. 8, 1910
Zürich, Switzerland
Death: Nov. 11, 1982
San Francisco
San Francisco County
California, USA

"Klaus Berblinger was stricken by a fatal heart attack at home on November 11, 1982. Just two days before he had celebrated the birthday of one of the undersigned in full health and good spirits. He had been associated with the University of California and the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute since 1958, and was well liked by colleagues, students, and patients. He was born in Zurich, Switzerland on September 8, 1910, the son of Walter Berblinger, then professor of pathology at the University of Marburg, Germany. Not long afterwards, his father accepted the position of director of the department of pathology at the University of Jena, and the family moved to their new destination. In Jena he went to elementary school and later attended the Gymnasium, which after graduation in 1929 allowed him to register at the Medical School of the University. After passing the preliminary examinations he transferred for his clinical years to the University of Munich. There he finished his studies in 1934, but due to the political circumstances in Germany, the authorities withheld the diploma and he found himself without doctorate or license. To earn a living, he joined a group of students, who organized a cabaret which traveled through Germany. But political satire was not well tolerated by the regime and he was arrested and interned in Dachau. Only through the help of friends was he released and able to leave Germany. In 1935 he registered at the medical school of the University of Berne, Switzerland, to obtain a doctor of medicine diploma. Years later after the defeat of Germany, the license to practice and the doctorate from the University of Munich were restored to him.

But in 1936 without a license to practice in Switzerland, Berblinger could only hold internships and residencies that were not wanted by natives; he trained in various sanitaria and research institutes until he decided to emigrate to the U.S. in 1938. He accepted an internship in Norfolk, Virginia, where he eventually established a general practice of medicine. Meanwhile he had married a girl whom he had met in Switzerland, Marianne Hammerli (divorced May 1967 in San Francisco), with whom he had two children, a son Rene and a daughter Bettina. After
having consolidated his financial position, he decided at the age of forty to give up general medicine and to turn his attention to human behavior, an interest that was evident earlier in his life in his penchant for the theater. From 1950 to 1952, he spent two years training in psychiatry at Duke University, then he moved to the University of Maryland, and, rising through the ranks, he became an associate professor in 1956.

In 1954, when he was recruited by Feinsinger and Greenhill for the newly opened Psychiatric Institute of the University of Maryland, Feinsinger saw psychiatry as encompassing almost all of art and science, so he had on his staff a philosopher, a cellular physiologist, an educationalist, and sundry other "experts." Berblinger became "The Physician," and it was to him that the students and house staff turned when practical wisdom and judgment were called for.

In those days when the whole world seemed to smoke, his smoking was never ordinary, and his cigarette always seemed more a panache than "a smoke." This dramatic aura made him seem to the younger staff like someone larger than life, yet he was always approachable, and grounded in the knowledge that life is not always easy. This combination of The Dramatic and The Human was reflected in a gift his secretary gave him when he left for California. It was a silver "Zippo" cigarette lighter with KB:RM engraved on it.

In 1958 the Langley Porter Institute looked for a medically trained psychiatrist who could handle psychiatric situations and manage the liaison with the University of California Hospitals, and also could supervise the clinical services of the department of psychiatry. After screening a number of candidates, the choice fell upon Dr. Berblinger and he moved with his family in 1958 to San Francisco. Here he could utilize his experiences gained in the practice of medicine and psychiatry and apply them to the field of psychosomatic medicine. Indeed, the majority of his publications deal with the borderland between medicine and psychiatry. But Klaus Berblinger was not only an excellent physician; his erudite comprehension of human affairs, his familiarity with the world of literature, and his knowledge of music (he himself was an accomplished violinist) made him a successful teacher who could hold the attention of his students. His sense of humor was proverbial and many a tragic situation was saved by pun or joke.

Berblinger was an intuitive physician who cared for his patients and who never lost his joy in working with them. We share with his family, friends, and colleagues the sense of loss that resulted from his death.

Dr. Berblinger is survived by his second wife, Francika Berblinger, and by a son Rene and daughter Bettina."

Klaus Berblinger and Francika E. Centurion were married on 26 Mar 1971 in San Francisco, San Francisco, CA

If you saw the Play you know my Story
Pacheco Cemetery & Crematory
Contra Costa County
California, USA
Created by: Jo Malone
Record added: Oct 13, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 78341137
Klaus Wilhelm Rudolf Richard Hans Berblinger
Added by: Jo Malone
Klaus Wilhelm Rudolf Richard Hans Berblinger
Cemetery Photo
Added by: John Lindert
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