It is with great sadness that we inform you that Professor Karl Lennert died Monday August 27, 2012 at the age of 91 years. We have lost one of the most important hematopathologists in history and the founder of the European Association for Haematopathology (EAHP)..
Professor Lennert pioneered the present knowledge of malignant lymphomas. By his bright intelligence, spirit of curiosity, rigorous methodology and strong motivation, he developed entirely novel views on lymphoid tissue that are still the basis of both lymphoma diagnosis and research. Relating lymphomas to possible physiological counterparts of the disease lead him to establish a terminology for cells, differentiation and growth patterns, that is still an integral part of the current classification.
Under his leadership, the Institute of Pathology of the Christian-Albrechts University in Kiel became the most important reference centre for malignant lymphomas in Germany and other countries in Europe as was well as for several American colleagues. Moreover, he actively built up intensive partnerships with many Asian colleagues. He started the impressive case collection that is still available in Kiel and represents a true patrimony for the international community.
Professor Lennert was the father of the Kiel Classification that was pivotal for the present WHO classification of the tumours of the lymphoid and haematopoietic tissues. In doing this, he looked for an international consensus by funding the European Lymphoma Study Club and the European Lymphoma Study Group, which in 1988 gave rise to the present EAHP.
As scientist and academic, he founded a school that has generated many leading pathologists in Germany and all over the world. In addition to being a gifted scientist, teacher and diagnostician, those who knew him well were also impressed by his warmth and many admirable personal qualities. He was a gentleman.
We all are indebted to Professor Karl Lennert for his unique scientific contributions to the lymphoma world and his leadership.
Letters of condolence should be addressed to his daughter Monika Böske, Oberer Katzenbergweg 11, 07084 Würzburg.
On behalf of the board of the EAHP and all past presidents,