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Professor John Goldman: A Book of Condolences

On the death of Professor John Goldman. Emeritus Professor of Haematology, Imperial College.

Many CML patients will be very upset to hear of John’s death and might like to express their appreciation of him. Professor Jane Apperley would like to put together a book of condolences that will be lead from the Hammersmith in London.
Please read her message below.


‘It is with great sadness that I have to tell you that John Goldman died on Dec 24th only one week after he was diagnosed with metastatic cholangiocarcinoma (cancer of the bile duct). His contribution to haematology was enormous and he will be much missed by the national and international haematology community, but very especially here at Imperial where he worked for more than 40 years

There will be time in the future to celebrate John’s life and achievements, but for now our thoughts are with his family. You may know that none of his family are in the medical profession and may not appreciate the depth of respect and admiration that we all hold for John. It seems that a book of condolences might be the way to proceed.

Thank you,
Professor Jane Apperley, Imperial College, Hammersmith Hospital, London.


Please send your message of condolence to Sandy at
I will collate them all and send them on to Professor Apperley for inclusion in the book of condolences which will then be given to his family.

Please include your name and any other information that you feel may be relevant such as any of the following:
whether you are a patient/caregiver, a member of this or any other group, have been treated at any time by Prof. Goldman, have met him, are aware of the work he has done on behalf of CML patients everywhere.


Hi Sandy,
Just a few comments.John Goldman was truly a great practitioner and scholar who apparently was author or co-author of over 800 learned articles in specialist journals and who pioneered much transplantation work in the days before TKIs became available.
I came across a very interesting video presentation by him on the iCMLf website (International CML Foundation)-up on the top right of their home page is the foundations virtual learning program and John Goldman is one of the contributors titled "CML Treatment with Imatinib";not sure of the date.
On the same home page is the report that Janet Rowley died in December in Chicago from complications arising from ovarian cancer;she of course was known as the researcher who discovered that the Philadelphia chromosome found by earlier researchers involved the translocation of 9 and 22.This is well written up in the book "The Philadelphia Chromosome" by Jessica Wapner which is the subject of a separate thread on this forum.
John of course was a very close correspondent with Brian Drucker and other key practitioners/researchers at the time when imatinib was being formulated and trialled back in the late 1990s.
John Goldman and Janet Rowley will both be remembered
As a post script there are a number of video presentations on the virtual learning program of the International CML Foundation that may be of interest to forum members-I found the presentation by Susan Branford from Adelaide on molecular monitoring to be of interest;it focuses on the ideal response levels/time frames for CML treatment and the monitoring required once complete molecular response has been achieved.

Yes, we have lost 2 very significant people in the world of CML in particular. Janet Rowley was also a remarkable person and she proved conclusively that the PH chromosome is the result of a reciprocal translocation of parts of 9 and 22.

The loss of John Goldman will be difficult for the not only the clinicians and researchers that he mentored over the years, but also for his colleagues all over the world. His insight and influence was immense.

The book of condolence is for his family, I hope you (and others) can take the time to write just a few lines in his memory.

He was my doctor when I was first diagnosed and supported my right to try to find another way to stay alive apart from transplantation- even though he probably thought I was taking a big gamble he never tried to discourage me from travelling to the US to join the phase 2 trial of STI571 (imatinib) in Portland Or. I will be eternally grateful for that support.


I am a friend of Dr. Goldman's son, and I first met Dr. Goldman at MIT graduation in 2004 and later in Havanna in 2008. I am very sad to hear of his death; I appreciate the important medical work he did at Imperial College and National Institute of Health in Maryland. Napier Fuller (Wilmington, NC)

John supervised my haematology training at the Hammersmith when I first went there as LRF Fellow over 30 years ago but more than that he became my friend, mentor and support over my whole career in haematology. His capacity to continue to contribute to the sum of CML knowledge is sadly lost to us all now, but at a personal level I have lost someone whom I admired and valued greatly. I will miss him very much, Steve Johnson

I was diagnosed in August 2004 a patient at the Hammersmith. Although not a patient of his, I was treated by several of his rising stars in the haematology department.
We first met john in October 2004 at the annual patient Carer seminar in Birmingham. From the start we could see this was no ordinary doctor.
A true gentleman who ate and slept CML.
One of the leading Doctors if not the leading Doctor in his field. Someone who had time for you and gave each question thought before answering.
His hallmark, his glasses on his forehead will never be forgotten. His zest for prolonging life was inbuilt. We had met him on several occasions and always seemed to know about you even though he probably met several thousand people in between time.
A truly remarkable man and one who has helped so many during his lifetime.
The CML world I'm sure salutes him.

We would like to send our most heartfelt condolences to his family.
Steven and Carol Davies

Very sorry to hear John Goldman had passed away. I was never under his care but he was always very engaging and interesting to talk to about all things CML, and he was very helpful in taking time to explain things a bit more to me early on after my diagnosis - which was reassuring. A bit of a shock to hear he has died so soon after being an active participant at the patient day in November.

Will send a note via email for the book, Sandy


John Goldman made CML his life's work. For that gift we must be eternally grateful. 'We' are not just CML patients, past and present, who have benefited from his observant, elegant and ever curious mind but also those of us who will, at some future date, become patients and receive some treatment that will have been informed by his contribution. David

John was my doctor when I was diagnosed with CML in 1998 and helped me enormously during what was for me and my family a terrible time. Because I was able to discuss my diagnosis so freely with John, against all the odds, I was able to find the strength to follow my instincts and travel to the US to take part in one of the early clinical trials of STI571 (imatinib). This alone changed my prognosis and I believe, saved my life. I will be eternally grateful to him for what proved to be far sighted advice, as well as his complete honesty about the likelihood of surviving CML in the longer term.
Somehow, talking with John during those first months after diagnosis, I regained a little of the sense of autonomy that I had lost.

I was very fortunate to speak with John in mid-November when we both attended the 2013 CML patient and carer day in Oxford. Along with Professor Apperley and colleagues at Imperial college Hammersmith, John supported the instigation of a CML patient education day, first held in London back in 2002.

In those days this kind of meeting would have been almost unthinkable by many members of the medical profession, but John’s willingness to listen and move with the times meant that it has become an annual event and remains the most important date of the year for CML patients and their families in the UK. I had no idea that the short conversation John and I had before the start of the patient and carer day in November 2013, would turn out to be the last conversation I would ever have with him.

I am now very grateful that he took the time to talk with me. He was such a very significant person in my life.

It is my impression that there is a profound sense of loss amongst his medical colleagues, both here in the UK and in the global international medical and research community. But John was valued for more than his clinical achievements and rightly so.

His untimely death is profoundly felt by many of us who benefitted from his kindness and generosity, not only in his willingness to share his clinical expertise but also in his delight at joining any discussion about the wider issues of life that might come up. John was an erudite and profoundly empathetic human being.... a great humanitarian first and foremost. He will be remembered as a force for good in a distressingly unfair world.


The CML Society of Canada was very saddened to hear about the recent passing of Professor John Goldman. We had the pleasure of meeting with him on many occasions. It was especially important for us to learn from him his keen thoughts and insights on advancing the knowledge of CML and follow his continuing good work which we have all greatly benefitted from. Our CML community has lost a very strong leader and pillar of knowledge and we owe an immeasurable amount of gratitude to his family for sharing professor Goldman with us. Professor Goldman will always be remembered as a strong, selfless, dedicated and very kind person. May his family be spared any further sorrow.

With deepest sympathy and profound gratitude,

Cheryl-Anne Simoneau, on behalf of The CML Society of Canada

It is with profound sadness that I note the passing of John Goldman. He was an outstanding teacher and clinician. I remember him as an intellectual power house, well respected and who taught with a deep sense of understanding of the biology of CML. I learned a lot from him when I trained at Hammersmith in the mid-80s. The world of CML has lost a leader.