Index of Memorial Resolutions and Biographical Sketches

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Professor emeritus Karl K. Klein was born in Buffalo, New York, in 1916 and passed away on October 31, 2003, in Ithaca, New York.

Professor Klein received his M.S. degree in 1951 from Ithaca College in New York and his M.Ed. degree from Springfield College in Massachusetts in 1954. Prior to this time, during World War II, his service in the military included two years assisting in physical rehabilitation at the U.S. Naval Rehabilitation Center in Corvallis, Oregon.

From 1946-1953, Professor Klein was the director of physical rehabilitation at Ithaca College. From 1953-54, he was the instructor in charge of the physical rehabilitation program at Springfield College.

In 1954 he came to The University of Texas at Austin as a specialist in physical rehabilitation in the required physical education for men department. He evaluated thousands of physically challenged students to determine if they could be successful in one of the required physical activity classes. When it was possible, he would assign students to one of these classes. For any students unable to participate in one of these classes, Professor Klein would design a special physical activity program in the rehabilitation gymnasium. He also taught courses in adapted physical education, weight training, and the game of squash.

Professor Klein started and directed the Physical Rehabilitation Clinic in Gregory Gymnasium, helping thousands of people from all walks of life. He was a legend among hundreds of Austin runners who were very grateful for having been “patched up” and shoved back out onto the very same streets that first brought them knocking on his door. He was also “THE” authority on knee injuries and rehabilitation. He always refused payment from people he helped, instead asking that they donate to scholarship funds that he and his wife, Marjorie, had established.

Professor Klein was one of the best known physical educators in the areas of sports medicine, rehabilitation, corrective exercise, adapted physical education, and physical medicine. The quality, importance, and quantity of his published research made him well-recognized nationally and internationally as one of the top authorities in his field. His research efforts exhibited the finest clinically oriented undertakings in his specialty. His work was published in leading professional journals, nationally and internationally, including The British Journal of Physical Medicine and The American Journal of Surgery. Several of his publications were also translated into Russian, German, and Japanese. A major pride in his life was that, even though he was not a medical doctor, he was often asked to present his work at national and international medical conferences.

His work included federally-funded research related to sports injury prevention programs, analysis of short leg syndrome, and studies that led to the prohibition of deep knee bends in all branches of the military. His work was also recognized by the American College of Sports Medicine, and one of his testing instruments, the Klein Medial-Lateral Collateral Testing Instrument, is still on display at the Smithsonian Institute (the National Museum of History and Technology) in Washington, D.C.

Professor Klein wrote three books and had over 150 articles published in professional journals. He also presented many invited lectures all over the world. He also received many honors, including the Julian Vogel Award for Meritorious Service and Life Membership and the International Who’s Who in Education.

In 1983, Professor Klein and his wife, Marjorie, established an endowed graduate scholarship through the Texas Alumni Association. Each year, for over twenty years, two well-deserving students have received scholarship money from this special fund. His official career at UT spanned from 1954-1985, but he continued to serve students, faculty, staff, and local citizens in his rehabilitation facility for many years after his retirement. For almost fifty years, he was fiercely dedicated to The University of Texas at Austin, giving willingly and generously of his time in many ways.

Professor Karl K. Klein was appointed professor emeritus June 1, 1985.


Larry R. Faulkner, President
The University of Texas at Austin


Sue Alexander Greninger, Secretary
The General Faculty

This memorial resolution was prepared by a special committee consisting of Professors Charles Craven (chair), Pete Tyson, Waneen Spirduso, and Terry Todd.