Longtime faculty member of IU School of Medicine dies in Iowa crash


IU School of Medicine (Photo courtesy of Google Maps)

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HARRISON COUNTY, Iowa – A longtime faculty member of the Indiana University School of Medicine was killed in a crash in Iowa over the weekend.

The three-vehicle collision happened in the southbound lanes of I-29 in Harrison County at about 6:16 p.m. Sunday, according to a police report.

Dr. Betty Cobbs (Photo courtesy of the IU School of Medicine)

The report says a Cadillac XTS was going northbound on the interstate when for unknown reasons it left the side of the road, went through a median and entered the southbound lanes. That’s when police say the Cadillac sideswiped a Chrysler 300 and then hit a Ford F450.

Three people were killed in the crash, including Dr. Betty Cobbs, 65, of Knightstown, Indiana. The other two victims have been identified as Richard Lee Van Zee, 80, and Mary Ann Van Zee, 77, both from Rock Valley, Iowa. Two other Indiana residents were injured.

The IU School Medicine issued the following statement regarding the passing of Dr. Cobbs, saying she taught residents and medical students for nearly 25 years.

“We are deeply saddened to learn of the death of Dr. Betty Cobbs, a longtime faculty member in both pediatrics and internal medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine. Dr. Cobbs was passionate about providing excellent care to her patients and was the consummate educator who generously taught residents and medical students for nearly a quarter century. We extend our sincere condolences to her family and friends, and to all those who worked with and learned from her.”

According to her university profile, Dr. Cobbs earned her bachelor’s degree in biology from Bryn Mawr College before studying medicine at Temple University and her residency was at the IU School of Medicine. She specialized in internal medicine and pediatrics.

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