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Summer 2007 Vol. V, No. 4

In Memoriam

Marwan Mounir Uwaydah (MD ’61), professor of medicine, died on April 3. After completing his residency training in internal medicine at AUBMC in 1964, Uwaydah specialized in infectious diseases at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. After returning to Lebanon in 1966, he introduced the specialty of infectious diseases, the practices of infection control, and antibiotic utilization monitoring at hospitals in Lebanon.

Uwaydah joined the Department of Internal Medicine and the Department of Bacteriology and Virology in 1966. He was promoted to the rank of professor in 1981 and served as head of the Division of Infectious Diseases and chaired the Department of Internal Medicine. He is survived by his wife Farihan, his son Mounir, and his daughters Sabah and Rania.

Saadoun Hammadi (MA ’52), former prime minister of Iraq, died on March 15 at the age of 85. Hammadi, who also served as head of the Iraqi National Council until 2003, had a PhD in economic agriculture from Wisconsin University (1956). He was appointed editor-in-chief of the Baathist daily Al-Joumhouria in 1958 and held numerous government positions during his lifetime.

Leila Osseiran al-Hafez (BA ’55), prominent political and humanitarian activist and prolific writer, died on April 14. After studying political science at AUB, she focused her literary work and activism on human and women’s rights, Arab nationalism, the Palestinian cause, and the occupation of South Lebanon.

Professor Yusuf Shibl passed away on April 16 at the age of 73. Shibl taught business administration at AUB for many years as an assistant and associate professor (1983-2001) and later as a senior lecturer (2003-05). After earning his PhD in economics from UCLA in 1971, Shibl worked in academia and business in the Gulf both at Dar al-Handassah and AUB. In addition to his academic credentials, Shibl was an expert on Arab music and had a passion for sports. He is survived by his wife Salwa, his daughter Hadeel, and son Bassel.

George I. Zarour (BA ’53, MA ’57), former AUB professor of education, director of the Division of Education Programs, and acting academic vice president, passed away on March 16 at the age of 76. Zarour had a PhD in education and chemistry from the University of Wisconsin, was a senior Fulbright scholar at the University of Maryland, a visiting professor at Florida State University, a senior general educator for the World Bank, and head of educational missions in a number of countries. Zarour was guided throughout his life by the motto of his alma mater: “That they may have life, and have it more abundantly.” He is survived by his wife Nadia, daughter Sandra Haddad, sons Sami and Randy, grandchildren Seri, Dana, Mona, Stephanie, and George, and sister Judith.

Michael S. Mamakos, (MD ’56) died at his home in Huntington, New York on September 11 at the age of 80. Mamakos started his medical career in the 1960s as a general surgeon and began specializing in plastic surgery in 1977. In 1978, Mamakos participated in a landmark medical procedure in which he helped perform one of the first successful reattachments of a severed leg on an 11-year-old girl who had been struck by a train. In his spare time, he loved to paint watercolors. He is survived by his former wife Jean, daughter Lisa, sons Michael and Paul, and his brother Peter.

Professor Emeritus E. Terry Prothro died peacefully at his home in Maryland on June 2. Professor Prothro came to AUB in 1951 following naval service during World War II and teaching positions at two American universities. He taught psychology until1984, was Arts and Sciences dean from 1965 to 1973, and director of the Center for Behavioral Research until he was reluctantly evacuated by helicopter in 1984 during the civil war. He continued to work with AUB as adviser to the chairman of the Board of Trustees until his retirement in 1985.

Students still recall Professor Prothro’s meticulous precision and compelling enthusiasm in the classroom; colleagues remember the sardonic wit he brought to Arts and Sciences faculty meetings.

On various leaves from AUB Professor Prothro taught at Brooklyn College, the University of Michigan, Harvard, the University of the City of New York, the University of California, and American University in Washington, DC.

Following his retirement from AUB Prothro directed the Hariri Colleges Project in Washington, DC, and was vice president of the Hariri Foundation, from 1990 until 1997.


Prothro’s research and many publications focusing on cross-cultural psychology—family patterns in the Arab East, child rearing in Lebanon, and other studies of psycho-sociological issues in the Arab World won him numerous awards, including the Lebanese Order of the Cedars.

Professor Emeritus Aftim Acra (Pharmaceutical Chemistry ’46), a public health expert and longtime AUB academic, died in New York on April 13.

Driven by a desire to ease the suffering of the one billion people who lack access to safe drinking water, often resulting in the devastating spread of waterborne diseases such as cholera, Professor Acra pioneered a technique using sunlight to purify water. This technique is now used to improve water quality in developing countries worldwide.

Acra also discovered and collected Lebanese amber, studied its fossil inclusions, and was a leader in microscopic photography. In 1978 the British Museum named the insect Parasabatinca aftimacrai for Acra, commemorating his research in the field of paleobiology.

During a nearly 50-year career at AUB that began in 1949, Professor Acra served as chairman of the Department of Environmental Health at the Faculty of Health Sciences from 1966 to 1989. He was named professor emeritus of environmental sciences in 1992.

He was also very active off campus: he mapped the natural water supplies of Lebanon, studied issues related to water pollution in Lebanon and the region, and assisted in drafting laws for the prevention of water pollution in the region. He also worked with the governments of many Middle Eastern countries on a variety of public health issues and environmental problems.

Professor Acra received the Lebanese Order of the Cedars, Commander Rank, in 1972. He is survived by his wife Nadia, his sons Michel, Fadi, and Sari (MD ‘89), and his daughter Reem (BBA ‘82).

An interview with Professor Acra and his wife Nadia may be found on-line in the winter 2004 issue of MainGate.