Cover photo for Dr. Luke Kim's Obituary
Dr. Luke Kim Profile Photo
1930 Dr. 2015

Dr. Luke Kim

April 22, 1930 — July 12, 2015

April 22, 1930 - July 12, 2015 Dr. Luke Ik Chang Kim, 85, passed away on July 12, 2015, in Seal Beach, Calif.

A resident of Davis from 1969 to 2006, he served for three decades as chief psychiatrist and chief of research and staff development at the California Department of Corrections' California Medical Facility in Vacaville. During his tenure, he provided psychiatric treatment to inmates Charles Manson, Sirhan Sirhan, Juan Corona and Timothy Leary, among others. Additionally, he was a clinical professor of psychiatry at the UC Davis Medical School from 1973 to 2005.

Dr. Kim was actively involved in the American Psychiatric Association and founded the Association of Korean American Psychiatrists. Much of his career was focused on raising awareness of and promoting cultural psychiatry: understanding one's cultural background, customs and values in order to effectively diagnose and treat psychiatric disorders. He also published extensively on the mental health and psychiatric care of Asian American immigrants.

In 2006, he and his wife established the Luke and Grace Kim Endowed Professorship in Cultural Psychiatry at UC Davis Medical School in order to build on its nationally renowned training and research center for cultural psychiatry.

Dr. Kim was born on April 22, 1930, in Sinuiju, Korea. His youth was marked by turmoil, political strife and great personal loss as a result of events surrounding the Japanese occupation of Korea followed by the Korean War. His family escaped to South Korea in 1945 in order to flee the communist government that took over North Korea following World War II.

Four years after receiving an M.D. from Seoul National University in 1956, Dr. Kim earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Arizona. He completed post-doctoral training in Arizona, New York and California.

He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Grace; sons David of Vienna, Va., and Danny, of North Tustin, Calif.; daughters-in-law Julie and Janet; grandchildren Tessa, Jaisohn, Jeffrey and Luke; and siblings Iknan Kim of Seoul, Korea, Iksung Kim of Bridgewater, N.J., and Paul Ikpoong Kim of Seal Beach, Calif.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in his honor are greatly appreciated to: The Luke and Grace Kim Endowed Professorship in Cultural Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, UC Davis Health System, 2230 Stockton Blvd., Sacramento CA 95817.

A memorial service open to friends and community members will begin at 2 p.m. Saturday, July 18, at Davis Community Church in the fellowship hall, 412 C St. A reception will follow.

Previous Events

Saturday, July 18, 2015
2:00 PM
Davis Community Church

412 C Street
Davis, CA 95616

The Luke and Grace Kim Endowed Professorship in Cultural Psychiatry

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Luke Kim, please visit our flower store.


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