Collage Created by Ed Supovitz
Charles Kelman

American Jewish Inductees of the National Inventors Hall of Fame


Charles Kelman:

Inducted into the National

Inventors Hall of Fame-2004

by Seymour "Sy" Brody

Charles Kelman was an American Jewish ophthalmologist who was inducted into the Inventors Hall of Fame, in 2004, for his material removal apparatus and method employing high frequency vibrations for cataract surgery, patent number 3,389,363.

Kelman was born in Brooklyn, New York, on May 23, 1930, to Eva and David Kelman. After graduating from Forest Hills High School, he went to Tufts University and graduated with A B.S. degree, in 1959. He went to the University of Geneva and earned his medical degree in 1956. He interned at the Kings County Hospital in 1978, in Brooklyn. Kelman did his residency in ophthalmology at the Wills Eye Hospital, in Philadelphia.

He was the holder of a hundred patents relating to the care and surgery of the eye and other parts of the body. He was the Clinical Professor at the New York Medical College. He was the Attending Surgeon at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary and Manhattan Eye, Ear and Throat Hospital. He was also the Consultant Surgeon at many hospitals throughout the world.

Kelman was a gifted and talented person. He played the saxophone and entertained on many television programs: The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, The Barbara Walters Show, The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Merv Griffin Show, The David Letterman Show and many others.

His friends called him Charlie. He and his saxophone appeared in concert with Lionel Hampton and Dizzy Gillespie, Las Vegas and other cities throughout the country and he made a recording for Columbia Records.

In his busy schedule, he managed to learn to fly his own helicopter. He was an avid golfer. He wrote lyrics and music for a number of shows. He was constantly teaching surgical techniques to doctors around the world.

Kelman and his wife, Ann, had five children and three grandchildren.

Charles Kelman died on June 1, 2004, in Boca Raton, Florida.


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Last updated 12 December 2008