Ken Hashimoto, M.D., a former chair of the Wayne State University School of Medicine’s Department of Dermatology, died Nov. 9, 2017, in his Ann Arbor, Mich., home. He was 86.
Dr. Hashimoto chaired the Department of Dermatology from 1980 to 2000, when he retired as professor emeritus.
Dr. Hashimoto was born and raised in Niigata City, Japan. A strong legacy of achievement in academic medicine exists in his family. His father held the position of professor and chair of Dermatology, dean of the Niigata University School of Medicine and president of the university, where Dr. Hashimoto received his medical degree. His brother also is a dermatologist.
He held faculty positions at the University of Tennessee and Tufts University, and was chair of Dermatology at Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, before coming to Wayne State University in 1980.
Dr. Hashimoto immigrated to the United States in 1956. He was a Fulbright Scholar and completed residencies in Dermatology at the University of Maryland and Massachusetts General Hospital. His areas of interests included electron microscopy and histochemistry, and two diseases are associated with his name.
In 2007, Dr. Hashimoto and his wife, Noriko, established the Dr. Ken Hashimoto and Noriko Hashimoto Endowed Chair in the Department of Dermatology and Syphilology. “Research was the most important element of my job,” said Dr. Hashimoto, who wrote 384 professional papers, 39 book chapters and eight books during his distinguished career. Earning respect as an excellent educator and widely regarded as a top clinician internationally, in addition to managing classroom and laboratory teaching responsibilities, Dr. Hashimoto trained 100 resident physicians and 40 research fellows, assuring the continuance and growth of his academic and clinical expertise in new generations of dermatologists.
Two of his daughters are graduates of the WSU School of Medicine: Martha Hashimoto, M.D., Class of 1993, and Amy Hashimoto, M.D., Class of 2000.
Dr. Hashimoto spent his free time studying and publishing research. He enjoyed farming and planted numerous gardens and fruit trees. When he retired, the Department of Dermatology presented him with a John Deere tractor. He also loved raising birds and had pet ducks, pheasants and peafowl.
He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Noriko (Sakai); daughter Naomi (Stephen Brod); daughter Martha (Tom Wagner); son Eugene (Mariko); daughter Amy (Dan Hemmer); and nine grandchildren, Anri and Hana Brod; Yoshio, Kenji, and Miya Wagner; Tyler and Sayer Hashimoto; Rei and Kaya Hemmer.
He also is survived by sisters Yayoi Sasai, Sanae Kawaguchi and Azuma Ikeuchi; and brother, Ryo.
Services will be held at the Nie Funeral Home, 3767 West Liberty Road, in Ann Arbor, on Nov. 16. Visitation is at 11 a.m., followed by a memorial service at noon.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers a donation be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research at https://www.michaeljfox.org.