Tribute

Dr. Jean-Paul Diss


Dr. Jean-Paul Diss — 1928-2012

It saddens us deeply to learn of the passing away of Jean-Paul Diss who died suddenly on 7 June 2012 at his home.

Jean-Paul arrived at CERN in June 1965.

At that time, the Director General, Prof. V. Weisskopf, decided that CERN should have its own occupational physician and Jean-Paul was the first to hold this post where he applied all his skill and energy to provide the Organization with a medical service worthy of the name.

We were all his "patients" in some way, and Jean-Paul knew how to listen to us and give us advice.

He studied medicine in Strasbourg and began his medical career at the Potash Mines of Alsace in Mulhouse.

In 1965 he created the CERN Medical Service, initially housed with the Fire Brigade, but in 1969 moved to building 57.

A second physician, Dr. Etienne Maquet arrived in 1971.  The medical team was built up progressively with nurses and a medical laboratory.  He created a closely-knit network of medical relationships on both sides of the border, working efficiently and always with great modesty until his retirement in 1993.

When it was decided to create the CHIS Board Committee at CERN (under the CCP) to monitor our Health Insurance Scheme, Jean-Paul was naturally a member.  He applied himself deeply in all subjects treated at the CHIS Board and we can highlight, in particular, his involvement in the implementation of the Disability Insurance (Long Term Care) and its follow-up.

After his retirement, he joined the CERN and ESO Pensioners' Association (GAC-EPA) and as a member of the Committee he continued his activities in the CHIS Board by representing retirees until late 2011;  since January 2012 he was an invited member of the Committee as a medical expert.

Although retired, he maintained close relations with the medical world outside CERN, through his contacts, particularly with the Geriatric Services of the Geneva University Hospitals (HUG), and with the support of the CERN Medical Service, he organized information conferences on brain aging and helped initiate the participation of CERN in a HUG research program on the subject.

All who knew him during his active period or after retirement, the members of the Committee, the CHIS Board, and the many pensioners who came to consult him, enjoyed his dedication, understanding, his human qualities, his warmth, and his unwavering readiness to help.

Jean-Paul was also an avid musician, organ player and member of the CERN Choir, of which he was president for a while.

Much more than a colleague, Jean-Paul, you were a true friend and we will deeply feel your absence.

Friends of Jean-Paul
The CERN Medical Service,
The GAC-EPA Committee

The family sent these thanks to GAC-EPA members: