Dr. Elijah Saunders, a prominent Baltimore cardiologist and an advocate for African American health has died, the University of Maryland School of Medicine announced April 8. He was 80.

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Dr. Elijah Saunders worked as a cardiologist for decades. (AFRO Archives)

Saunders graduated from Morgan State University in 1956 and received his medical degree from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in 1960. A cardiologist for decades, Saunders was head of the section of hypertension, in the cardiology division of the University of Maryland’s department of Medicine.

Saunders was also a founding member, past chairman of the board, and past president of the Association of Black Cardiologists, with hypertension among Blacks one of his primary research interests. Saunders was recognized for his contributions to minority cardiovascular health by the American Heart Association, which recognized him with the Louis B. Russell Award, the American Heart Associations highest honor for contributions to minority cardiovascular health.

The American Heart Association has also recognized Saunders with its Award of Merit.

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of my friend, personal physician, and mentor,” said U.S. Congressman Elijah Cummings in a press release.

“Throughout his career, Dr. Saunders was dedicated to achieving healthcare equality, with a special focus on the African American community. His passion was treating people with hypertension and teaching them about the dangers of this ‘silent killer’. . . . A true giant has moved off the stage of life,” said Cummings.

Two Services are scheduled:

There will be a viewing on Friday, April 10 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Transformation Church, located at 5150 Baltimore National Pike, Baltimore, Md.  A pre-celebration will take place at 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. On Sunday, April 12 a Family Greeting hour will be held at the New Psalmist Baptist Church, located at 6020 Marian Drive, Baltimore, Md. The funeral service will follow at 6:30 pm.

On Sunday, April 12 a Family Greeting hour will be held at the New Psalmist Baptist Church, located at 6020 Marian Drive, Baltimore, Md. The funeral service will follow at 6:30 pm.