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Joseph William Slap, M.D. Class of 1944 

SACO and PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Joseph William Slap, M.D., 94, of Seal Rock in Saco and formerly of Philadelphia, passed away peacefully at his residence on May 9, 2022.

He was born on Aug. 27, 1927, in the Bronx, New York City, the son of Leonard and Elizabeth Goodman Slap. Dr. Slap was a brilliant student who graduated from Townsend Harris High School in 1944 and the College of the City of New York in 1948, after completing an interim year in the United States Army.

In 1953 Dr. Slap graduated from Hahnemann University Medical School in Philadelphia, Pa., where he would later teach and supervise residents and psychology interns. Dr. Slap specialized in psychiatry and studied with the New York Psychoanalytic Society and Institute before permanently moving to Philadelphia, where he joined the Philadelphia Psychoanalytic Association, later becoming a training analyst.

He was a pioneer in integrating concepts in neuroscience and cognitive psychology with psychoanalytic theory, and created the Schema Model, which challenged deeply held psychanalytic theory at the time. Dr. Slap cared for many patients over his long career and was the author and coauthor of numerous scientific papers and a book that he wrote with his daughter.

Dr. Slap was devoted to his family and enjoyed many long summer vacations on Lake Winnipesaukee, N.H., a family tradition that continues to this day. There he introduced his children to a love of sailing, boating and fishing. Dr. Slap collected modern art and shared his love of art and antiques with his children, taking them to museums, including frequent visits to the local Barnes Foundation.

Later in life he developed a deep knowledge of wine, and loved discovering and sharing a great find. A keen competitor, Dr. Slap played tennis with family and friends, and presided over brilliant games of Scrabble, and fun family nights of poker and Hearts. However, nothing was more fun for him than spending hours making up and playing games with his grandchildren, and later meeting his great-granddaughter and great-grandson.

Survivors include Joseph’s beloved wife of 68 years, Betsy Slap, R.N. of Saco; Robert Slap and Nancy of Center Sandwich, N.H. and their children and stepchildren, Michael, Lindsay, Annie and Brittany; Lee Slap and Laurie Ann of Belmont, Mass., and their children, William, Andrew and Thomas; Ted Slap and Lisa of Chesterfield, Mo., and their child Andy; Laura Slap-Shelton and Stephen Doane of Kennebunk, and their children and stepchildren, Melanie, Patrick and Ashley, as well as his great-grandchildren, Brooklyn and Bryson, and his nephews, Derek and Andrew Slap. A funeral service will be held 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 24, 2022, from Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St. Kennebunk. Burial will follow in Hope Cemetery, Kennebunk.

To share a memory or leave a message of condolence, please visit Joseph‘s Book of Memories Page at Arrangements are entrusted to Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St. Kennebunk. Donations in Dr. Slap’s honor can be made to Maine Public Radio.