Netsky graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, where he also earned a master's degree in physiology and a doctor of medicine degree.
After an internship and a year of residency in neurology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, he served for two years in the Army Medical Corps, and was discharged as a captain.
Netsky served as professor of neurology and neuropathology – and chairman of the Department of Neurology – at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C.; professor of neuropathology at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville; and professor of pathology at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, where he became professor emeritus.
He served on many professional and scholarly boards, including the Scientific Advisory Board of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, and was president of the American Association of Neuropathologists.
The author of numerous articles and three books on neuropathology, he was honored with a plaque in 1986 by the American Association of Neuropathologists.
Netsky is survived by his wife, H. Margaret Pease Netsky, and brother Eugene Netsky.