H. Martin Northup, MD, is being remembered as a fair, dependable and dedicated radiologist who inspired residents, fellows and faculty alike.
Northup, a longtime professor of radiology at the University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville, died March 6 after a lengthy battle with cancer. He was 72.
An Arkansas native, Northup arrived on campus in 1973 to complete a two-year radiology residency at University Hospital, which is now UF Health Jacksonville. Following his residency, he became an associate radiologist and soon medical director of the hospital’s radiologic technology training program.
Frederick Vines, MD, a former radiology chair, appointed Northup as associate chair of the department in 1984. Vines said Northup handled a bulk of the department’s clinical duties such as setting the faculty work schedule. In fact, Northup was still making the schedule upon leaving due to illness – just a week before he died.
Vines said Northup was incredibly reliable and consistent and never hesitated to fill in when another faculty member had to take off.
“He always handled what needed to be taken care of,” Vines said. “His value to the department was really immeasurable.”
Kristin Taylor, MD, an assistant professor of radiology, had known Northup since 2002, when she began her residency at UFCOMJ. She joined the faculty in 2008.
Taylor said Northup had a work ethic that was unsurpassed. She remembers him putting in long hours and taking on an exceptional amount of work. Northup treated everyone fairly and never assigned anyone more work than he took on himself, Taylor recalls.
“Dr. Northup gave the best advice and had the right answers,” she said. “Faculty, fellows and residents looked up to him because of the example he set. He was dedicated to the department. This was his passion, and he did it for as long as he could.”
Northup was a member and past president of the Northeast Florida Radiological Society and the Florida Radiological Society. He also belonged to the Radiological Society of North America.
Northup, who developed a strong interest in interventional radiology during the specialty’s formative years, held a number of clinical and academic positions during his 43 years at UF Health, including several stints as associate chair of the department of radiology. He was also the hospital’s chief of staff for seven years.
In 2015, he won the Luis Russo Award for Outstanding Medical Professional, which is given annually to a single UFCOMJ faculty member, and the Compliance Advocate of the Year award. That accolade recognizes commitment to ethical business practices and continued support of compliance efforts at UFCOMJ.
The H. Martin Northup Conference Room is named in his honor and is intended to promote resident education with protected meeting space and the latest technology.
Barry McCook, MD, chair of the department of radiology, says those accolades and honors were well-deserved and exemplify the type of radiologist and teacher Northup was. McCook said Northup was extremely service-oriented and always put patients first.
“He shaped the department by his incredible work ethic and ‘always do the right thing’ attitude,” McCook said. “His impact was tremendous on me as a department chair, as I always had a mentor to go to with difficult issues. His vast experience was a wealth of knowledge I could tap to help me in my decision making.”
Aside from work, McCook considered Northup a good friend with whom he had great talks on a multitude of issues. McCook, like other faculty, is also quick to point out Northup’s ever-present cigar hanging from his mouth – a look that became his signature.
“Even though the department had time to prepare during his long illness, we were very saddened to learn of his passing,” McCook said. “It’s very difficult for all of us who knew him so well to realize that he’s not working with us anymore. He will be tremendously missed.”
Northup is survived by his wife of 32 years, Lynn Meree, four children and five grandchildren. Memoriam donations can be made to the H. Martin Northup, M.D. Radiology Fund, which supports enhancements to the radiology residency program at UFCOMJ. To contribute, click here.
Emeritus Associate Professor
Program Director, Musculoskeletal Radiology Fellowship