Raymond (Bill) Hoffenberg was born in Port Elizabeth on 16 March 1923. He went to school in that city and was a bright schoolboy who also excelled at sport. Later in life he excelled at squash and golf. At the age of 16 he entered the Faculty of Medicine, UCT, as a first-year medical student. Two years later he enlisted voluntarily in the SA Defence Force and saw action in North Africa and Italy. After the war he resumed his medical studies and qualified MB ChB at UCT in 1948. After his internship with Professor Frank Forman he spent a year as a registrar in the pathology department at UCT before specialising in clinical medicine, as was the frequent custom at that time. After completing his registrar training and working in the UK, where he obtained the MRCP, and a Carnegie Fellowship to the USA in 1957 and 1958, he was a senior researcher in endocrinology supported by the CSIR, the forerunner of the MRC in medical research. He was appointed as a specialist and later as a senior specialist in the Department of Medicine at Groote Schuur Hospital and UCT. He distinguished himself as a clinician of great skill and with a deep regard for his patients. An outstanding teacher, he brought clarity and simplicity to clinical problems and was highly regarded by the students–both undergraduate and postgraduate. Bill also excelled as a researcher in thyroid disease, albumin synthesis, protein-calorie malnutrition and calcium kinetics–in all these areas he made original observations. Research in clinical endocrinology also earned him an international reputation and, together with the late W P U Jackson, he established endocrinology at UCT.