Fredric M. Somach passed away Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013.
Dr. Somach was a neurosurgeon at Venice Hospital and volunteered medical services to the Senior Friendship Center and South County Clinic after his retirement. He was a Diplomate of the American Board of Neurological Surgery, a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of the American Society of Neurological Surgeons.
Fredric is survived by his wife, Roberta, whom he married in 1960; their son Stephen and his wife, Martha, of Cleveland, Ohio, and grandchildren David and Sara; their son William of Nokomis, Fla.; and their daughter Susan, of Atlanta, Ga., her son Jasper and twin siblings, Tessa and Sasha. His other daughter, Robin, died at 18 months.
He is also survived by his sister, Beverly Somach, of New York City, and her four children, Jeffrey, Wendy, Sabrina and Daniel; and sister-in-law Sue Robinson and husband, Murray, from Bloomington, Ind., their son, Andy, and twin daughters, Roberta and Nancy.
Born in Manhattan Oct. 8, 1930, to Samuel Nathan and Beatrice Ross Somach, Fred and his sister grew up on the Lower East Side. He attended Stuyvesant High School in New York City, where he was concertmaster and soloist with the school orchestra. He majored in musicology and literature at Syracuse University, performed as a member of an outstanding student string quartet and played in the city’s professional orchestra. He subsequently graduated with high honors from the medical school at the Catholic University of Louvain in Belgium. Fred spoke French fluently and traveled Europe on a motor scooter.
After completing his medical internship and neurosurgical residency in Philadelphia, Pa., he joined a group specialty practice in Flint, Mich., and served on the medical staffs of the three major hospitals. The family enjoyed the medical and cultural life of the city, but Florida beckoned.
Having obtained his Florida medical license early in his career, Fredric finally moved the family to Sarasota County in 1977 to establish a new medical practice and continue to pursue his passion for music. He became the neurosurgeon at Venice Hospital and was on staff at hospitals in Englewood and Charlotte County. His wife became active in the community.
All of Fred and Roberta’s children participated in performing arts throughout their school years, Stephen as cellist, Susan a ballet dancer and flutist and William a violinist and violist. Stephen graduated from Riverview High School, Susan from Pine View and William from Venice High, each eventually becoming a doctor, a lawyer and a journalist and musician, respectively.
Meanwhile, Fred the violinist continued to be a patron of the arts and enjoy classical chamber music sessions in the home with accomplished musicians like David Cohen and Ciel Newman. A highlight was a family quartet with Fred, his sons Bill and Steve and friend Mischa Koskoff participating in a master class with the famous Guarneri Quartet during its residency in Tampa, Fla. In recent years, he has had the pleasure of playing wonderful works for string quartet with Steve on cello, Bill on viola and grandson David on violin. And so the musical legacy lives on!
Services: A private family service is planned.
Contributions: Memorial donations toward a medical legacy may be made to Gulf Coast Community Foundation.