Obituary – Prof. Dr. Med. Charles Beyer-Machule
Prof. Dr. Med. Charles Beyer-Machule passed away peacefully on July 9 after a brief illness.
He was born in Berthelsdorf, Germany on June 4, 1927 and is survived by Janice, his wife of 38 years.
After completing his preliminary degree in Biochemistry at the University of Göttingen, Germany, Prof. Beyer-Machule received a scholarship from the Institute of International Education as a graduate student in biochemistry at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, where he subsequently he obtained his M.D. degree in 1956. After a year of internship at the Detroit Receiving Hospital, Michigan, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force on active duty as a flight surgeon until 1961.
Eager to begin his career in Ophthalmology, Prof. Beyer-Machule was then accepted into the Residency Program at the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary in Boston. By this time, he became interested in Ophthalmic Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery and pursued a Postgraduate Fellowship at the Manhattan Eye, Ear & Throat Hospital in New York City, followed by the Wilmer Eye Institute in Baltimore, Maryland. Prof. Beyer-Machule was one of the founders of the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS) in 1969.
Prof. Beyer-Machule became chief of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Massachusetts Eye & Ear Infirmary from 1971-1981, and Clinical Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at Harvard Medical School. Teaching was very important to him. He trained 15 fellows from the US and abroad, and presented many lectures throughout the world, many eponymous and prestigious. He published as author and co-author four books and 115 papers.
With international exposure he became acquainted with Prof. Otto-Erich Lund of the Ludwig-Maximilian University Eye Clinic in Munich, and was asked to establish a department of Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery there, becoming honorary professor. Prof Beyer-Machule originally initiated the educational course for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery of the Eyelids, known as the “Beyer-Machule-Course”, which is still held in Munich. He often said that the time he spent at the Munich Eye Clinic was the highlight of his professional career and found it very rewarding.
He was also an honorary member of both the German and European Ophthalmological Societies, and also the European Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ESOPRS).
Prof. Beyer-Machule loved to ski, particularly in Zermatt. He was an avid reader of European history. Once retired, he and his wife kept residency in Garmisch-Partenkirchen until 2015.