The Longmont community mourns the loss of Dr. Craig Bereznoff, a gifted and caring physician, who died of cancer after a four month illness. Affectionately known as Dr. B, he served the Longmont community for 27 years. He was respected, loved and touched the lives of so many in our town and beyond. In this day and age, he was a modern country doc. He treated patients who could not afford medical care, made house calls, and was approachable outside the office. He always practiced medicine from his heart. Patients always said that “Dr. B took the time to listen.”
Dr. Bereznoff graduated from the College of Osteopathic Medicine at Michigan State in 1983. He began practicing medicine with the US Marine Corp. As a Flight Surgeon for the 3rd Marine Corp Air Wing, he was voted Flight Surgeon of the year (1984-5). He was proud to serve in this capacity. Specializing in Aerospace and Environmental Medicine, he was initially slated to move onto a career as an astronaut/physician. This career path was cut short when he developed cancer in 1985.
Having experienced and survived this cancer, he began to see, feel and understand what patients who are ill experience. With the encouragement of the Marine Corps Aviators in his squadrons, he left his position as a flight surgeon and opened his practice in Family Medicine and Surgery in Longmont, Colorado in 1986. Lessons learned as a patient contributed to the success of his practice, which flourished until his retirement in April 2013.
Dr. Bereznoff saw state of the art medical care as being the artful application of the most up to date medical and scientific knowledge. He recognized the age old medical axiom; "first do no harm.” The mainstay of his practice was conventional medical and surgical care. However, over time, his vision became larger. Dr. Bereznoff was a pioneer and champion of integrative medicine and he incorporated complementary modalities in his practice.
Dr. Bereznoff had been blessed with an intuitive ability to see what is wrong, without always needing to "run every test in the book.” He always said, "I treat patients, not numbers or pictures." Of his patient’s he said “you are not just a symptom, you are a whole person who has a family, a job, a physical and emotional life; all of which impact your health.”
As a Clinical Associate Professor of Medicine for the University of Colorado Medical School, and 3 additional medical schools, he ongoing taught externs, interns and residents at his office. He felt honored to be able to teach his students the art and science of being a great physician.
Along with being a gifted physician, and a deeply spiritual man, Dr. B was also a renaissance man of many talents and interests. He was a skilled marble sculptor, painter, photographer, chef, jeweler, marksman, gunsmith, architect/builder, wine connoisseur, art collector, builder of computers and stereo sound systems, and master of Slavic languages. He had a photographic memory and had the unique ability to quickly master every field he took interest in. His prodigious intellect kept him restless and curious.
He loved the mountains and in his younger years he was a competitive skier, rock climber and mountaineer. Doc was a proud Harley rider and life-time member of the NRA. He was a dog lover and cherished spending time on his120 acre, self-built, ranch on the rugged Wyoming border.
Dr. B was married to Zoë Rabinowitz, a psychotherapist with a private practice in Longmont. Together they worked to bring health and well-being to all they encountered. That special union will be a loss to the Longmont community.
A “Celebration of Life” service will take place September 22, 2013, 3:00 PM, at Rocky Mountain Christian Church, Niwot, CO 80503. All are welcome. A reception will follow. Visit www.ahlbergfuneralchapel.com to share condolences.