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      Revered radiologist recognized as Traverse City legend

      Dr. Harry Weitz, Munson Medical Center's first radiologist.

      Dr. Harry Weitz was recruited by Munson Medical Center to be their first radiologist and he started their radiology department.

      "To this day, the radiology department at Munson is named after Dr. Harry Weitz,?? said Peg Siciliano, Archivist at the History Center of Traverse City.

      Weitz's son, Dr. Charles Weitz, said his family moved to Traverse City in 1938, and his father introduced radiology to Northern Michigan.

      ??He took his own images, he processed his images, he actually then interpreted the images and had a typewriter at the desk and actually transcribed his own reports," said Charles. "He influenced, not only myself and my career and so forth, but there are six of us that have followed in his path as radiologists in our family.??

      Siciliano said the History Center of Traverse City selected Dr. Harry Weitz as one of their legends because of his various accomplishments and his impact on the Traverse City community. Weitz was one of the founders of Northwestern Michigan College and also served on the Board of Directors for 12 years. Weitz helped develop Munson Medical Center and was also a board member of the Children's Clinic. Weitz also served on the Traverse City Rotary Club.

      Weitz was a prominent member of Congregation Beth El and played a part in breaking barriers to diversity in the area.

      ??The fact that the country club did have a sign that there were no blacks and no Jews allowed, did come down at the behest of my father," said Charles.

      According to Charles, his father was invited by two other physicians to join the Traverse City Golf and Country Club. Charles said his father told the physicians he would be glad to join, however, the sign said he was not welcome.

      "They hadn??t noticed, so it was at that time that they took notice and the sign came down,?? said Charles.

      Siciliano said Weitz was concerned about everyone feeling welcome in the community.

      "In the 1940s Joe Louis, the black boxer, known as the ??Brown Bomber??, came to Traverse City, he was going to help referee some of the boxing matches during the Cherry Festival," Siciliano said. "They could not find a place for him to stay, because none of the hotels would let a black man stay there and Dr. Weitz was very instrumental in finding him a place and making him feel welcome.??

      For more information about the spring Legends Exhibit go to the History Center of Traverse City's website .