Gary L. Grunewald, KU Professor Emeritus, passed away peacefully on February 20, 2023, at the age of 85. Gary was born in 1937 in Tekoa, Washington, as the only child of Ruby and Harold Grunewald. After completing his Ph.D. degree at the University of Wisconsin, Gary joined the University of Kansas in 1966 as an assistant professor in the newly created Department of Medicinal Chemistry. He was Chairman of the Department of Medicinal Chemistry from 1994 to 2003 and Interim Dean of KU School of Pharmacy from 1993 to 1994. He received numerous teaching awards, trained nearly 40 Ph.D. students and taught pharmacy students over his 50 year career as a teacher, mentor, and friend to so many. Gary was also active in the medicinal chemistry community external to KU. He served the American Chemical Society Division of Medicinal Chemistry in various capacities including chairman (1993–1994). He was selected as a Fellow of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (2006), a Fellow of the American Chemical Society (2010), and was an inaugural member of the Division of Medicinal Chemistry Hall of Fame (2006). Gary also was a founding board member of the Medicinal and Bioorganic Chemistry Foundation in 1993, a non-profit organization dedicated to education of medicinal chemists in academia and industry.
Gary leaves behind his former wife, Joan, cousins Sheri Riley, Gina Watson Fraser, and James Watson, and many former students and colleagues who have benefited from his teaching and mentoring. In lieu of a service Gary wishes everyone to remember him in their own way. After cremation his ashes will be interred at Jayhawk Cemetery on KU West Campus.