Polio pioneer Dr. Martha Lepow dies at 94

Martha Lepow, displaying her Paul Harris Fellow certificate, poses with Jim Leyhane who interviewed her for a 2017 video.

Dr. Martha Lipson Lepow, 94, a pioneer in polio research who was well known to Rotarians, died peacefully in her Slingerlands home on Sunday,

Martha, who visited SRC on a number of occasions to share her insights into the early days of polio vaccine research as well as provide analysis of current efforts to continue combating the often-fatal disease worldwide, was a pioneering expert in pediatric infectious diseases who was part of the early research that resulted in the Salk polio vaccine.

In 2017, Martha was interviewed by Dr. Jim Leyhane for a 20-minute video titled “Making Polio History: A Pioneer’s Story,” co-produced by SRC, CASDA, District 7190, and others.

According to her obituary, available on the Times Union website, a memorial service will be held in Congregation Beth Emeth, 100 Academy Road, Albany, at 1 p.m. Friday, December 3. In lieu of flowers, please direct gifts to Congregation Beth Emeth, and The Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center. To leave a condolence message for the family, please visit levinememorialchapel.com.

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