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Berton Roueche; Medical Writer for the New Yorker

Berton Roueche, 83, a medical writer whose tales of baffling diseases fascinated doctors, mystery writers and a generation of hypochondriacs. Roueche originated the New Yorker magazine’s “Annals of Medicine” series. His book “Eleven Blue Men,” a collection of his New Yorker pieces published in 1954, won a Raven award from the Mystery Writers of America for the best book in a mystery field outside its regular categories. Roueche once said the detective story owes much to the annals of medicine, noting that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle based his fictional character Sherlock Holmes on a physician. Roueche joined the staff of the New Yorker in 1944. His last story, on aplastic anemia, appeared more than three years ago, but he remained on the magazine staff. In Amagansett, N.Y., on Thursday of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.


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