Department of Pathology

Christine McMahon, MD (May 6, 1960 – March 24, 2016)

Christine McMahon
Christine McMahon as a young scientist.
The Department of Pathology mourns the loss of Dr. Christine McMahon, esteemed colleague and renowned physician-scientist, who joined Montefiore-Einstein in 2008.

Dr. McMahon was the Associate Director of the Flow Cytometry laboratory and served as Acting Director of the Hematopathology service at Montefiore Medical Center. She also served as acting director of the Hematopathology fellowship and co-director of the Molecular Genetic Pathology Fellowship and was Associate Professor of Pathology. In addition to her clinical duties, she was actively involved in collaborative research with members of the Hematopoiesis Group at Einstein. A highly-valued clinician scientist, Dr. McMahon made important contributions to clinical service, education and research in the Department of Pathology and at the College and Medical Center. An able achiever and performer; a wonderful manager and teacher, a problem solver, and a team player, she will be missed.

Dr. McMahon's sister Elise submitted the following obituary to share with the Einstein/Montefiore community.

Dr. Christine McMahon died Thursday, March 24, 2016, in Montague, Massachusetts at the home of her sister, Elise. She was 55 years old.

The cause was a gliosarcoma, originally diagnosed on May 31, 2014, according to her mother Helen McMahon and her father, Dr. Charles McMahon, Jr., Professor Emeritus, Materials Science and Engineering, of University of Pennsylvania.

Born in Boston, Massachusetts on May 6, 1960, Dr. McMahon was raised in the West Philadelphia and West Mt. Airy neighborhoods of Philadelphia. Christine attended school in Cambridge, England during sabbatical year 1973 to 1974.
A 1978 graduate of Germantown Friends School in Philadelphia, she earned her B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania in 1983 and her M.D. from the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, one of the oldest public research universities in Germany, in 1991.

She was known for her intense integrity, her lifelong attachment to family and friends, her flare for affordable vintage fashion, and her devotion to her salukis, Jabu and Leelah, who she trained for Agility, Rally Obedience and Conformation competitions. She loved classical music and theater, particularly enjoying and supporting Lantern Theater Company in Philadelphia, founded by her brother Charles McMahon in 1994.

After returning to the United States from Germany in the early 1990s to pursue further service in cancer research, she worked at the Fox Chase Cancer Center in her hometown of Philadelphia from 1993 to 1997 and Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston from 1997 to 2000. In 2000 she moved to St. Louis to do a Residency in Pathology at Washington University, followed by a Fellowship there in Hematopathology. She also completed a Fellowship in Molecular Diagnostics at University of Pittsburgh from 2004-2006, She then worked at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore from 2006 to 2008. From 2008 to 2014, she worked as a hematopatholgist at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, New York. Dr. McMahon also held an appointment as an Associate Professor of Pathology (Clinical) at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
Stephan Steeger, her life partner, predeceased her in 2005, following a twenty-year relationship that spanned continents as well as decades.

Dr. McMahon’s survivors include her parents, Dr. and Mrs. Charles McMahon, her sister Elise McMahon and her brothers Charles, Robert, David McMahon, her sister-in-law Rebecca and two adoring nieces.

A life celebration service will be held at 4 pm on Saturday, May 14, 2016 at Germantown Meeting House at 47 West Coulter Street in Philadelphia. A Memorial Mass is being planned for extended family and friends during the summer in New Jersey. Dr. McMahon had donated her body for the Study of Medical Education. The family has designated three charities for gifts in Christine’s memory: Doctors Without Borders, Lantern Theater Company, and Weavers Way Community Programs. 

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