Martin Balaban, Ph.D.

Age 82, of Okemos, passed away October 14, 2012. He was born October 5, 1930, in New York, New York, to the late Louis and Yetta Balaban.

Martin received his Bachelor’s and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. He was a professor at MSU from 1964-1999 and was the founder and first head of the Neurosciences Program at MSU. Martin was also a founding member of Congregation Kehillat Israel. He was extremely proud of his children’s achievements and those of his former students.

As a former student wrote, “Marty was a wonderful, kind, and patient mentor for me. More than anyone else, he taught me how to think about science…Marty gave me so very much, lovingly, patiently. He was the ultimate mentor to a dumb Jewish kid who should never have been allowed to go into science, and he insisted that I become a scientist. Thank him; he’ll be in our hearts and prayers.”

He is survived by his wife of 62 years, Corinne Balaban; children, Dr. Carey (Naomi) Balaban, Dr. Evan (Maria Pompeiano) Balaban and Dr. Cassia (Robert) Freedland; seven grandchildren, Ilana, Shira, Avital, Devora, Benjamin, Graham and Julian; seven great-grandchildren; brother, Dr. Bernard (Martha) Balaban; and many nieces and nephews and friends.

The funeral service will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, October 16, 2012, at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel, with Rabbi Michael Zimmerman officiating. Interment will follow in Evergreen Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Congregation Kehillat Israel, Mazon: A Jewish Response to Hunger, or to the National Yiddish Book Center.

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2 Messages to “Martin Balaban, Ph.D.

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Carmelo Milo & Andre Savard
October 15, 2012 at 11:48 am

We are very sorry for your loss. Your beloved Martin will live forever in your heart.

Carmelo & Andre

Bedford and Carolyn Vestal
October 22, 2012 at 9:46 pm

Corinne and family, Jack King sent us Marty’s obituary. Please accept our condolences. Marty was a wonderful mentor to Bedford and one of the teachers who really made me think. He was a kind man with a delightful sense of humor, and we feel honored to have known him. All of you will be in our thoughts. Sincerely, Bedford (Ph.D. 1070) and Carolyn Vestal, Houston, Texas


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