An Obituary: Luis Fernandez-Herlihy, M.D.

January 27, 2023

Luis Fernandez-Herlihy, M.D., of Bedford died on Jan. 23, 2023, two weeks shy of his 97th birthday.

“Lu” was born in San Diego, but spent his childhood traveling around South America and Europe with his parents, Graciela Herlihy and Luis Fernandez-Macgregor, a Mexican diplomat.

He attended St. Louis University and in 1949, graduated from Harvard Medical School. After residencies at the Boston City Hospital and the Mayo Clinic, he served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps from 1955 to 1957 as chief of medicine at the U.S. Army Hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Lu practiced internal medicine at the Lahey Clinic for 34 years, serving as head of the rheumatology section for 25 years, and a member of the board of governors for three years. A past president of the New England Rheumatism Society, he was also a member of the Massachusetts Medical Society, and a fellow of the American College of Physicians and the American College of Rheumatology.

Luis Fernandez-Herlihy, M.D

Lu was best known for his kindness; keen sense of humor; wide-ranging curiosity; deep appreciation of books, nature, travel, and classical music; and good-humored patience with his five beloved daughters.

Above all he loved his wife of 68 years, Ruth (Ruthie) Stillman, who predeceased him. Some of their happiest days were spent in Chatham sailing, walking, reading, and birding.

In his later years, Lu enjoyed the many good friends he made at his Carleton-Willard Village home, finding special contentment in his dear friend and fellow cinephile Ruth Reeves.

He leaves daughters Chrissy (Rodrigo Carvajal), Sarah (Brian Wiseman), Katie (Mark Donovan), Betsy (George Sugai), and Martha (Dan Clune); 10 grandchildren (Luisa, Peter, Sarah, Nat, Eliza, Alex, Maggie, Kiyoshi, Danny, and Reiko); and 13 great-grandchildren (John, Alejandra, Sofia, Anna, Max, Ru, June, Billy, Tom, Greta, Kenzo, Zella, and Elliot).

Memorial services are private. As an expression of remembrance, you may make a donation in Luis’s name to the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program. Mail to: Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program, Development Office, 780 Albany St., Boston, MA 02118.

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