Obituary: ‘Incredibly popular teacher’ dies unexpectedly

Douglas J. Law

Meredith Shea

Dr. Douglas J. Law, Professor in the School of Biological Studies, died unexpectedly of a cardiac arrest March 27.  He was 52.

Law arrived at UMKC in 1993.  He taught anatomy and histology after receiving his bachelor’s degree in zoology and a doctoral degree in anatomy and cell biology, both from Duke University.

He completed his postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA where he studied muscle microanatomy and disease.

“He was an incredibly popular teacher,” said Theodore White, Interim Dean of the School of Biological Sciences. “He seriously knew his subjects yet he had a light-hearted approach. Students sought out his classes.”

Law also collaborated with colleagues and students in their research and was known as an excellent microscopist.

Law is survived by his wife Patricia, daughter Katie and son Conor.

He was a family man, participating in Girl Scouts and father-daughter dances with his daughter.  Law was an Eagle Scout and a Boy Scouts troop leader for Troop 118 at St. Peter’s school. He also enjoyed participating in lacrosse with his son.

“The university mourns for the loss of one of its most respected faculty members,” said UMKC Chancellor Leo Morton. “Our deepest sympathies go to Dr. Law’s family, his colleagues and the hundreds of students who have sought his teaching through the years.”

Students, faculty or staff in need should contact the UMKC Counseling Center at 816-235-1635.

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