Nicholas Michael Kredich died peacefully at his home on November 7, 2017 after a year-long illness. He was born in Chicago, IL on Sept. 23, 1935 and was raised by his parents, Nicholas and Olga Kredich, in Elmwood Park, IL. He is survived by his daughter Kathryn Rohlf and husband John of Truckee, CA, and their children Jackson, Lucas and Laney; son Matthew and wife Kimberley of Knoxville, TN and their children Miles, Benjamin, and Coleman; son Nathan and wife Sherri of San Diego, CA and children Hannah and Sam; and sister Joanne Sheasby of Barrington Park, IL. He is predeceased in death by his wife, Deborah Welt Kredich, his brother Paul Kredich, and his companion late in life, Joan Tetel-Hanks.
After he was graduated from Oak Park and River Forest High School (Oak Park, IL), Nick attended Duke University on a track scholarship; he also played football and was on the team that went to the Orange Bowl in 1955. He received his BA in Chemistry and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He went on to earn a Masters in Biochemistry and an MD at the University of Michigan, where he was the valedictorian of his medical school class. For his medical training, Nick received a Markle Scholars-in-Medicine Award, which is granted to “gifted practitioners planning to further their careers in academic medicine”. After his internship and residency in internal medicine at Duke University Medical Center, Nick was a research associate at the National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Disease where he received a prestigious USPHS Research Career Development Award. Nick returned to Duke Medical Center where he joined the faculty in the Departments of Biochemistry and Medicine. Through his career as a physician-scientist at Duke, he treated patients in internal medicine and rheumatology and conducted cutting-edge biomedical research. His research focused on mechanisms of metabolic control and immunodeficiency diseases. Nick was a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator and published regularly in top scientific and biomedical journals. Nick was a highly regarded professor at the Duke School of Medicine; his clinical diagnostic classes trained hundreds of medical students.
Nick was married to his wife Deborah for 49 years. Many of their dinner conversations were focussed on their patients and on rheumatology. Over the years, their home was open to countless medical students, residents, researchers from far and wide, Duke swimmers, and friends who could always count on a free meal, a glass of wine, and a great story with plenty of laughter. Nick’s passion for people and for knowledge was renowned. He was a life-long learner: amateur mycologist, accomplished chef, European traveller, master gardener, and artist. Many may remember his beautiful wooden Christmas ornaments and his silk-screened cards; he loved to share his creations with his friends and family. His greatest passion, which his spent a lifetime mastering, was fine woodworking. His attention to detail and the time he spent perfecting each piece produced works of professional quality. Years after he lost his beloved wife, he met Joan Tetel-Hanks, who brought love, joy, and her own loving family into his life.
A memorial service will be held 2:00 PM Sunday, December 17, at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 3639 Chapel Hill Road, Durham. Friends may visit with the family following the service in the fellowship hall.
In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Dr. Kredich may be sent to Habitat for Humanity of Durham, 215 N. Church St., Durham, NC 27701, or online at www.durhamhabitat.org.