It is with deep sadness we share that our dear colleague, Anna Woodruff-Martinez, MD, passed away peacefully last week in hospice care. Anna was a highly accomplished geriatrician who radiated energy and brilliance. For those who did not have the pleasure of knowing her, Anna’s presence is forever and deeply embedded in the UArizona and SAVAHCS community. She radiated energy and brilliance and she is deeply missed.
Anna was a graduate of our UArizona College of Medicine and received the Commitment to Underserved People Award. She was an Internal Medicine resident in our UArizona COM - T training program. Of no surprise to anyone, Anna was selected to be a chief resident and was awarded the Dean’s List for Excellence in Teaching. She was committed to the care of older adults, and was a Geriatric Fellow in our program.
Anna cared for older veterans at the Southern Arizona VA Healthcare System and was an outstanding clinical-educator, administrator and leader. She was the medicine clerkship director from 2010-2013 and her most recent position was medical director of the Rehabilitation and Transitional Care Line. For each step of the way, Anna distinguished herself. I was so excited a few years ago when we were so very close to having Anna join us as faculty in our GGP division, but unfortunately her illness prevented this from going forward.
Anna had an infectious enthusiasm and warmth, accompanied by an astonishing wit. Her depth of compassion and strength of determination defies words. It is no exaggeration to say that she was beloved by everyone with whom she interacted. Her smile is unforgettable.
One of her colleagues reflected that “Anna brought drops of sunshine to co-workers, sprinkles of optimism to patients, and showers of love for friends and her most precious family. A truly wonderful human. We will miss her so very much.”
Anna cared not for rank or status. She embraced people in her life for their goodness, their passion, and their honesty, regardless of relationship or station. Her many friends felt that they had found a true gem in Anna Woodruff Martinez. Amrita, her daughter, and Fabian her husband, knew how truly remarkable Anna was.