On the morning of September 2, 2019, at his Napa home, Dr. Robert (Bob) Hayashi passed away peacefully in his Napa, CA home after struggling with a long term illness. His wife of 40 years, Toni, and his daughter, Magen, held his hands as he took his final breath.
Born on March 29th, 1938, Bob was the oldest of four children of Sacramento dentist Dr. Akio Hayashi and wife Alice. During WWll, Bob and his family were forced to evacuate their Sacramento home and were relocated to Japanese Internment Camps in Tule Lake, CA, Minidoka, Id., and finally to Caldwell, Id. After four years, the family was allowed to return to their home in Sacramento.
Bob went on to become student body President at C.K. McClatchy High School in Sacramento, Class of 1956, after which he graduated with an AB degree from University of California Berkeley. Bob followed in the footsteps of his beloved uncle Dr. T. Terry Hayashi, earning his medical degree from Temple University in 1963. He then served as a U.S. Army battalion surgeon in Germany from 1964-66. He completed his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan from 1966-70, which led to a two year Fellowship in Biochemistry under the National Institute of Health at the University of Pittsburgh.
Bob went on to serve on the academic faculties as Professor in the Departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology at University of Texas Medical Center in San Antonio and as Chief of the Obstetrics Division at UCLA/ Harbor Medical Center in Torrance, CA.
Bob joined the faculty at the University of Michigan as Professor and Director of the Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine In 1985, In 1990, He was named the first J. Robert Wilson Professor of Obstetrics, an endowed chair . He was an expert in the field of Perinatology ( High Risk Pregnancy) and during his career made extensive contributions to the field, published innumerable articles and chapters in medical literature, mentored countless residents and medical students and developed a reputation as an outstanding clinician. He performed the first intravenous-intrauterine blood transfusion to a fetus in Michigan and was a pioneer in the use of ultrasound. Bob was also a medical legal expert in areas of rH negative pregnancy, diabetic care, premature labor, and preeclampsia. He left an indelible mark on so many tiny lives born into the world.
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An avid sports lover, Bob relished playing golf in and around Napa, as well as reading about sports, watching sports and talking about sports with anyone who would listen. The University of Michigan has lost its biggest fan, we are sad to say. We have lowered his beloved Michigan flag to half staff and are hoping they can pull out a Championship win in football in Bob’s honor this year.
He leaves behind a large family of loved ones including his wife, Toni, five children, Robert ( Lisa ), Richard ( Rachael), Suzanne (James), Magen, Matt (Amie) and nine grandchildren -Julia, Grace, Connor, Elizabeth, James, Sloane, Lance, Carter, and Reese. One of his greatest sources of pride was being a grandfather and he cherished every moment he had with his grandchildren and was so proud of all their accomplishments.
He will be profoundly missed by his brothers Ed (Reiko) and David (Sara ) and sister Sybil (Jerry) , his many nieces and nephews , and his extended family of cousins who played a significant role in his life growing up. He always had an easy smile when able to catch up with friends and family spread out across the country. Reconnecting with old Sacramento friends after returning to California, and particularly the McClatchy High Reunions, meant a great deal to him. He has forever etched his memory into the lives of his family and friends as a humble, loving ,warm hearted father, grandfather, husband, relative and friend.
We love him so much and will miss him always.
A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in his honor to—Rock Steady Boxing Program for Parkinson’s at Synergy Napa.