Upcoming Services

Seymour Grundy Tue May 21st at 2:00
Walter Stewart Tue May 21st at 1:00

View More



Dr. Jan Rival

Dr. Jan Rival, 87, of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, died on 15 March 2023.

The Funeral was held at IRA KAUFMAN CHAPEL on Sunday, 19 March 2023 at 2:00 PM .

Rabbi Daniel Schwartz and Cantor Penny Steyer officiated.

Click to watch a video of the recorded service.

Interment at Clover Hill Park Cemetery.

Click for Directions for Cemetery

The family of Dr. Jan Rival will be gathering through the evening of Sunday, March 19 at the residence, 346 Sycamore Court, Bloomfield Hills MI 48302. The phone number is 248-253-1747.

Family and friends will be gathering on Sunday from 5:30-8:30 p.m. Religious services will be held on Sunday at 7:00 p.m.

Click for Directions to Shiva

Family members include:
Beloved husband of almost 60 years of Eva Rival. Cherished father of Anita (Howard Siegel) Rival and Nicole (Tod) Hartje. Proud grandfather of Charlotte, Olivia, and Avery Rosenberg, and Jackson, Sasha, Elle, and Clayton Hartje. Loving brother of the late Anita Sipos. Dear brother-in-law of Peter Sipos, Ivan (Tana) Sloboda, and Dasa Stefankova. Special uncle of Tom (Kathy) Sipos and Kathy (Mitch) Silverman. Also survived by other loving relatives and friends.

Jan was born in Bratislava of the former Czechoslovakia, and was married there in 1963 to his wife, Eva Slobodova. Both Jan and his wife are Holocaust survivors. Raised in a family of doctors in Czechoslovakia, Jan never doubted that he would also become a physician. Dr. Rival became a renowned internist and cardiologist respected by his peers, admired by his students and beloved by his patients and of course, his family.

Jan earned his medical degree in 1959, summa cum laude, from Komenski University Medical School in Bratislava, remaining on the faculty in cardiology after his residency. In 1967, Jan earned a coveted one-year fellowship in the United States. In communist Czechoslovakia, if allowed to leave the country, it was customary for families to be left behind. Yet through his foresight, Jan was able to confidentially procure passports for both his wife and daughter. An anonymous tip was left in the mailbox informing Jan that his family’s passports would be revoked imminently. Jan, Eva and their daughter fled their country that night hoping the authorities would let them board a flight to leave the country.

Dr. Rival completed his year-long fellowship in cardiology at Philadelphia General Hospital. While residing in Philadelphia, the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia forced him to make the difficult decision to leave family and friends behind and remain in the United States. The rest of his family members eventually immigrated to Germany and Canada. Dr. Rival then completed a second fellowship in cardiology at Wayne State University. In 1969, he joined Henry Ford Hospital where he remained for the rest of his career until just before he passed.

Dr. Rival served as division head in the Department of Internal Medicine from 1985-1996. He served as the president of the Henry Ford Medical Association from 2000-2007 and was the recipient of the Fred W. Whitehouse MD Distinguished Career Award in 2008 in recognition of his exemplary service which epitomizes the mission of the Henry Ford Medical Group.

Fluent in German, Russian, Polish, Hungarian, Czech and Slovak, his linguistic skills enabled him to recruit medical staff for Henry Ford from Eastern Europe in the 1980s, bringing 30 new physicians to the health system. Also, his many languages gave him him a loyal following of patients who gained comfort speaking to their doctor in their native tongue and who enjoyed his personality, knowledge, as well as home visits when needed.

Jan remained at Henry Ford throughout the years because the doctors shared a commitment to practicing medicine by combining excellence in education, research, and patient care, while holding each other to the highest possible standards. During his career, Dr. Rival has participated in many research projects and has authored or co-authored more than 40 publications.

Dr. Rival was also a clinical associate professor of medicine at the University of Michigan and received its Outstanding Teacher Award in 1994 for his commitment to education. In 2006, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American College of Physicians, which honors doctors for their leadership, as well as for being advisors and mentors. Jan loved the opportunity to teach residents. His practice focused on education and patient care. Dozens upon dozens of Henry Ford staff and senior physicians are former students of Dr. Rival.

Jan’s patients honored him by creating two scholarships in his name. The Jan Rival Outstanding Resident Award is presented by the Henry Ford Health System each year to the most outstanding resident. The Jan Rival M.D. Resident Traveling Fellowship annually supports a resident to lecture and travel to the National American College of Physicians meeting.

Dr. Rival served as governor of the Michigan Chapter of the American College of Physicians (ACP) which presented him with its Laureate Award and Lifetime Achievement Award. He was also elected to ACP Mastership, the highest honor bestowed upon a member of the College. Jan is also a fellow in the American College of Cardiology, and in 2010, he was presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award honoring administrators or physicians who have significantly impacted Henry Ford Health System through outstanding leadership and have made significant contributions to the field of medicine.

Finally, the Dr. Jan and Eva Rival Education Room at Henry Ford Hospital was dedicated in 2008 in honor of Dr. Rival’s 45 years of service as a senior staff internist and preceptor to medical students.

Jan’s greatest pride and joy was his family - his beloved wife, Eva, with whom he was married for almost 60 years, his two daughters, who both attended Harvard University, and his seven wonderful grandchildren.

Jan enjoyed a wide variety of sports and hobbies. He was a competitive basketball player in Bratislava and transitioned to playing tennis in America until the age of 80. He was an avid sports fan and became a doctor for the Detroit Red Wings. Jan raised a sporty family and regularly supported each of his children’s and grandchildren’s competitions including hockey, soccer, tennis, swimming, baseball, volleyball, and Squash! Due to his popularity, Dr. Rival was chosen to be a physician to auto executives, which allowed him and his wife to travel the globe. Jan and Eva also enjoyed playing master points bridge together.

Jan taught those around him how to love, work hard, live life well and be generous to others—always with integrity and a sense of humor.

It is suggested that those who wish to further honor the memory of Dr. Jan Rival may do so by making a contribution to:

Zekelman Holocaust Center
28123 Orchard Lake Road
Farmington Hills, MI 48334
Click to Visit Charity Website

Jan Rival, M.D. Resident Traveling Fellowship
Henry Ford Health
1 Ford Place, #5A
Detroit, MI 48202-3450
To donate, select "direct my gift to" button from the dropdown menu to designate your gift to the Rival Jan Rival, M.D. Resident Traveling Fellowship.
Click to Visit Charity Website

Jan Rival, M.D. Outstanding Resident Award
Henry Ford Health, c/o Office of Phlianthropy
1 Ford Place
Detroit, MI 48202-3450
Click to Visit Charity Website