Dr. Ira Silverstein, 74, of Laguna Beach, passed away on Oct. 9 after an accident while traveling overseas. He grew up in New Jersey where he graduated from Hillside High as class valedictorian. At Princeton, he was pre-med but majored in English. After graduating from University of Pennsylvania Medical School, he did an internship in medicine at Yale and completed a psychiatric residency at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center, where he was Chief Resident.
He spent two years in the Air Force in Japan. In 1970, moving back to Manhattan, he entered private practice in psychiatry and taught at Columbia University. In 1988, he relocated to South Orange County, CA, continued a private practice, teaching at the University of California-Irvine and attending at various hospitals.
His many friends, family and colleagues will remember him as a literate, wryly humorous, artistic person, as a student of classical piano, and as an adept, though amateur, painter. He learned early that travel was an essential experience in life and spent his holidays exploring the historic and beautiful places on the planet.
He is survived by his life partner Paul Martin, several cousins and many friends. Donations may be made to American Cancer Society (Mosaic page) or a charity of your choice. A memorial service is planned for Nov. 17, at 2 p.m. at the Neighborhood Congregational Church in Laguna Beach.