Speaking of Fred Sachs

A website about the life and works of Frederick Sachs

Fred Sachs

A Tribute by Bev Harlos

An Appreciation of Fred

I couldn’t have asked for a better boss. He was always very thoughtful and treated me with respect. Considering I had never been a secretary, he was very patient and understanding. I had been an elementary school teacher, as I reminded the group in the lab many times, my experience as an elementary teacher came in handy working with them (in good humor).

Fred was not the type of boss to hover. He expected you to do the job you were hired for. Many times he would tell people that I ran the lab. Of course I didn’t, but I did try to do what I could for him and everybody else in the lab to make their jobs easier. After all, we were like a family thanks to Fred. I was and am a very organized person so this was greatly appreciated by Fred.

We shared a lot of good experiences including lab lunches and parties which I gladly planned for him. He was a wonderful mentor for many MD/PHD students and again had high expectations for them and treated them with love and respect.

We also shared some bad times, including loss of grant funds and loss of colleagues. Until recently the the loss of Phil, our biggest loss had been the passing of Steve. Now we’ve lost Fred.

I retired in 2017, but Fred asked if I  would continue to come in one day a week, at his expense, to do the paperwork that he hated. I did do that for 4 additional years; he was worth it. I was glad to help him considering how good he was to me. I will always miss the smile when he came into the lab in the morning. I’ll miss his one-word messages, “COPY, FAX, MAIL, SEND’. I won’t miss his misspelled emails that were always a challenge to figure out.

In addition to our workday relationship, I always admired Fred’s intelligence and love of science. I look back at our more than 20 years working together fondly and will always remember Fred as a wonderful, caring human being.


This tribute appeared on the website of the Society of General Physiologists: https://www.sgpweb.org/inmemoriam