December 18, 2014

Stephen M. Highstein

Stephen Morris Highstein, 74, of East Falmouth died on January 22 at Massachusetts General Hospital after his battle with leukemia. He was the husband of Gabrielle (Richards) Highstein for 15 years. Dr. Highstein was born in Baltimore. He was the son of the late Gustav and Ada (Abel) Highstein. He graduated from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York with an undergraduate degree in engineering, received his medical degree from the University of Maryland and his PhD from Tokyo University. He defended his dissertation in Japanese.

Dr. Highstein sent his toadfish experiment on the inner ear into space twice on space shuttle missions. He completed a neurology residency at Mt. Sinai Hospital, New York, and was a professor at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri, for 25 years. He first came to Woods Hole as a summer scientist in 1973 at the Marine Biological Laboratory. He became a senior scientist at MBL in 2009 when he moved his research full time to Woods Hole.

Dr. Highstein was an avid saltwater fisherman and had recently rediscovered woodcarving.

In addition to his wife he leaves his children, Gustav Highstein of Richmond, Virginia, Nathaniel Highstein of Portland, Maine, Winthrop B. Reed III of St. Louis, Roland R. Reed of St. Louis and Gabrielle V.L. Reed of Jamestown, Rhode Island; 11 grandchildren, Agata, Solomon and Sylvan Highstein, Tess Noel and Kai Patricio, Winthrop B., Sarah C., Sophie L., Margaret and Roland Reed, and Hugo Lazen-Bernardt; nephews, Alex Highstein and Jesse Highstein; and one brother, Max Highstein of Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was predeceased by one brother, Jene Highstein.

The family will hold a gathering from 1 to 4 PM on February 8 and again on February 15 at 154 Hatchville Road, East Falmouth.

Memorial donations may be made to Marine Biological Laboratory Office of Annual Giving, Candle House, 7 MBL Street, Woods Hole, MA 02543 or can be made online.

—Above reprinted with permission from The Falmouth Enterprise

A scientific biography for Stephen Highstein is here.