Cover photo for Dr. Bernard John Abbott's Obituary
Dr. Bernard John Abbott Profile Photo
1943 Bernie 2024

Dr. Bernard John Abbott

December 17, 1943 — March 18, 2024

Bernard John Abbott, PhD.

Dr. Bernard J. Abbott, 80, passed away peacefully on March 18, 2024, after a brief illness. He was born in Pittsburgh, PA to Bernard Paul Abbott and Rita (Rethage) Abbott.
Bernie attended Baldwin High School in Pittsburgh, then received a Bachelor of Science degree in 1965 and a PhD. degree in Microbiology in 1968 from Pennsylvania State University. After graduation he attended Michigan State University and completed a post-doctoral program there. In 1969 Bernie joined Exxon Research and Engineering Company, and in 1972 he moved to Eli Lilly and Company in Indianapolis and joined Lilly Research Laboratories, where he worked until his retirement in 1998.
During his career at Lilly, he received 19 scientific patents. He published many research papers, including review articles, in top scientific journals. He was a member of the American Society of Microbiology, the American Chemical Society, the Agricultural Chemical Society of Japan, and the Society of Industrial Microbiology, where he served as President from 1981-82. Later in his career as a Lilly Project Manager, he led several multifunctional teams, including two that brought drugs from development to the marketplace as successful products: Tazidime (ceftazidime), a third-generation cephalosporin antibiotic, and Gemzar (gemcitabine), a chemotherapy drug.
Flying was Bernie’s passion throughout his adult life, and he generously shared this passion throughout his 40 years of flying. He was an adventurer—he owned a succession of five airplanes, each one going higher and faster than the one before. Along with his wife and often family members and close friends, he flew for 40 years across the US, Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, and many islands in the Caribbean. He was an Instrument Rated pilot and also had his Commercial Pilot’s license, which he used to participate in the Angel Flight program, taking patients with serious illnesses to medical appointments in other states. Bernie was always willing to help friends and family and will be greatly missed by all.
Bernie was preceded in death by his parents and his brother Ronald Abbott. Survivors include his wife of 37 years, Marie (Anderson) Abbott, children John (Eleanor) and Gregory Abbott, grandchildren Richard, Angie, Valerie, and Lincoln, and great-granddaughter Daniela. He is also survived by his sisters Mary Ann (James-deceased) Dewar and Janet (Mitchell) Cipullo.
Memorial contributions may be made to Community Fairbanks Recovery Center, 8102 Clearvista Parkway, Indianapolis, IN 46256.
Visitation will be held Sunday March 24th from 3:30-5:30pm at Flanner Buchanan-Oaklawn Memorial Gardens (Conner Suite), 9700 Allisonville Rd. Indianapolis. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11am on Monday March 25th at Holy Spirit Parish at Geist Catholic Church, 10350 Glaser Way, Fishers, IN 46037, with visitation beginning at 10am until the service begins.
Online condolences may be shared at www.flannerbuchanan.com.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Bernard John Abbott, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Sunday, March 24, 2024

3:30 - 5:30 pm (Eastern time)

Flanner Buchanan- Oaklawn Memorial Gardens (Conner Suite)

9700 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis, IN 46250

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Visitation

Monday, March 25, 2024

10:00 - 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Holy Spirit Parish at Geist

10350 Glaser Way, Fishers, IN 46037

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Mass

Monday, March 25, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

Holy Spirit Parish at Geist

10350 Glaser Way, Fishers, IN 46037

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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