Thomas Sylvester Cottrell, M.D. of Cutchogue, NY died at age 83 of a stroke at his home on Sept. 17, 2017. Tom Cottrell was born in Chicago to Sylvester V. and Cleo Medley Cottrell, spent his childhood in Detroit and graduated from Williston Academy in Easthampton, MA. After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brown University in 1955 he returned to Williston to teach English. Training at Officer Candidate School in Newport, R.I., led to a commission in the U.S. Navy from 1957 to 1960 aboard the USS Scanner, based in California. Tom married his wife of 58 years, Jane Chichester Cottrell, in San Francisco in 1959. Lieutenant (LTJG) Cottrell received an honorable discharge from the U.S. Navy in 1965. Dr. Cottrell earned his M.D. from Columbia University in the City of New York, College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1965. His fellowship in pathology at Yale University in 1967 researching diseases of the lung was recognized for excellence by the John and Mary Markle Foundation. In 1968, Dr. Cottrell began his career in academic medicine as Senior Associate Dean of New York Medical College in Valhalla, N.Y. He joined the Stony Brook University faculty in 1979 as a founding architect of the School of Medicine, where he was affectionately known as Doctor Tom. At Stony Brook, few could evade the personal focus that Doctor Tom brought to all those he interacted with during his 21-year tenure as Executive Associate Dean and Associate Professor of Pathology, leading up to his retirement in 2000. At that time, he was given Professor Emeritus status in recognition of his valued service to the university. Doctor Tom’s impact extended beyond the Dean’s Office to all those students and colleagues who confidently sought out his insight and advice as a mentor and friend. Survivors include his wife, Jane; his brother, Stephen; three adult children, including Matthew Thomas Cottrell, Anne Cottrell Patin and Sarah Jane Lazar; and grandsons, Nicholas Cottrell Patin and Andre Thomas Patin.
Remembering members of the Williston Northampton community