A Tribute to Dr. Daniel Brookoff |
You served humanity like no one I have ever known. You used your incredible brain to ensure that people in pain would not have to suffer. You were a
small man but a giant among men because you were so kind and compassionate. Medicine was not just about money to you. Medicine was
getting to know your patient, and you got in trouble for this because you "spent too much time" with your patients. You were the only doctor I have
ever known who treated the whole person - mental, physical and spiritual. You never came in and made me feel as though you were ready to run out
the door. I knew when you sat down that we were going to have a "visit." You would ask me about my life, about my feelings, how I was doing,
what I was doing. You would look at me not through me. You once diagnosed a very bad gallbladder I was carrying around just by looking at
me. Yes, I had a gallbladder that was just ready to explode and had been having terrible pain. I had physicals and saw doctors here, but nobody
saw it except you. That's the kind of doctor you were. You didn't limit yourself to just your specialty because you didn't want to be bothered with
the whole body. You were very sharp that way. You got to know your patients so well that you knew when something was wrong just by looking at
them, and it did not have to be in your "specialty" for you to diagnose or help them.
You were an outstanding diagnostician, clinician and human being. You sacrificed much to continue your practice when you moved to Denver. The loss of you is devastating to me, and to countless others who came to know and rely on you not just for pain relief but for hope, as well. You once half jokingly said that you thought I just came to see you to talk to you. Well, you were very keen, weren't you. But what a tribute for a doctor to help someone more just by talking than anyone else could by other means.
You were soft spoken, but you could be angered. I can see you now sitting there on that stool with that wild curly hair going every which way the day I saw you, and you were so angry with the powers that be at Methodist. You did not understand the concept of blowing people off to make more money, and that got you in trouble. I remember those dark days well. I had been speaking with you on the phone because you had called me to see how the gallbladder surgery went. You didn't have to do that - it wasn't your surgery, but that's who you were.
All I can say now is that we will miss you. You have no idea how many people will miss you because we all loved you so much. You did the impossible - you were a doctor and a friend. You made me laugh. You got me to tell you secrets. You made me cry. You made me mad. You relieved my pain. You gave me hope. You were the tallest man I ever knew to be so short.
I pray you are resting and are at peace. The last several years have been difficult, demanding and trying beyond comprehension. I love you, Dr. D.
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