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Obituary: Ari Berlin, medical school graduate, pediatric intern, 27

Pediatrician-in-training battled pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer

March 1, 2018

Ari Nachum Berlin, MD, a pediatric intern at St. Louis Children’s Hospital and a 2017 graduate of Washington University School of Medicine, died Feb. 23, 2018, in St. Louis, after a 2 ½-year battle with pancreatic neuroendocrine cancer. He was 27.

“Ari was a brilliant, strong and courageous medical student and doctor,” said Lisa Moscoso, MD, PhD, associate professor of pediatrics and associate dean for student affairs at the School of Medicine. “So many in our community were inspired by his intelligence, compassion, drive and determination to be an excellent physician. He did so quietly, never bringing attention to himself. Ari was an incredible gift to our medical school and will be missed.”

Berlin grew up near Boston. He earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry in 2012 at Rice University and his medical degree last year at Washington University.

He met his future wife, Hallie Morris, while both were students at the School of Medicine. The couple married Jan. 7, 2017, and worked together for a brief time at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Morris, MD, is a fellow in newborn medicine, and Berlin began his internship at the hospital in July 2017.

Berlin was diagnosed with cancer while in medical school. Following his diagnosis, his parents moved to St. Louis from Massachusetts to offer additional support. While his cancer never went into remission, his treatments allowed him to continue his education and begin his training at Children’s.

“Ari loved his work at Children’s, and it meant so much to him that his spot as an intern was there for him to come back to,” Morris said. “He felt it was a privilege to be at work, when he was well enough to be there. Being around people energized him, and he was a natural with patients the few rotations he was able to do. He was just an amazing person and incredibly brave through everything. “

Berlin is survived by his wife; his parents, Kenny Berlin, MD, and Marsha Ross-Berlin, DMD; a brother, Josh Berlin; a sister, Jessie Berlin; and his grandmother, Maxine Berlin.

A graveside service was held Monday, Feb. 26, in Jacksonville, Fla. A memorial service is planned for 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, in the King Center, in Bernard Becker Medical Library on the Washington University Medical Campus.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Berlin’s name to St. Louis Children’s Hospital, for the support both he and his wife received during his battle with cancer, or to Siteman Cancer Center, for the excellent care he received while ill.