Find out from this article what caused the death of a well-known surgeon, his obituary, his funeral, and why he is being celebrated.
Dr. Victor Chang became a trailblazing figure in Australian medicine in 1984. His pioneering work included developing heart-lung transplantation and carrying out the first successful heart transplant in Australia.
Beyond the operating room, Dr. Chang’s accomplishments included his development of an artificial heart valve and his ongoing research towards an artificial heart. But in 1991, he tragically lost his life in unexpected circumstances.
Celebrating Victor Chang
Google is celebrating Chinese-Australian surgeon Victor Chang on his birth anniversary for his revolutionary work pioneering modern heart transplants.
On Tuesday, Google commemorated Chang with a doodle that featured a sketch of the gifted heart surgeon with an animated pulse rate in the background. Chang is remembered as a trailblazer in the fields of cardiovascular surgery and transplantation.
One of his most significant contributions to cardiology includes developing an artificial heart valve and an artificial heart assist device that is used worldwide in severe heart conditions.
Chang’s artificial heart valve offered a notable cost advantage compared to earlier models, enhancing its global accessibility for use in critical lifesaving procedures.
Why is Victor Chang being celebrated?
In 1984, the doctor led a team of surgeons who successfully performed a heart transplant on a teenage girl, Fiona Coote, who became Australia’s youngest heart transplant survivor at the age of 14.
She continued to remain well for 38 years after her surgery.
In the same year, Chang founded the National Heart Transplant Programme at St. Vincent’s Hospital, which has continued to perform surgeries.
He was born on November 21, 1936, in Shanghai, China, and later moved to Australia. He, however, died under tragic circumstances after being shot dead on July 4, 1991, at the age of 55 in a failed extortion attempt.
Chang’s contributions to the medical field have been widely acknowledged in Australia. He was bestowed with the country’s highest award, the Companion of the Order of Australia, in 1986.
He was voted “Australian of the Century” at the country’s edition of the People’s Choice Awards in 1999. The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute was established in 1994 and bears his name in a tribute to his legacy.
The institute remains dedicated to its commitment to discovering cures, preventive measures, and diagnostic tools for cardiovascular diseases.
“A caring surgeon and humanitarian, Chang was passionate about the power of discovery,” it says on its website.
“He had a bold vision to establish a world-class medical research institute, knowing that while he could save hundreds of lives through surgery, he could save thousands more through research.”
Chang’s tragic death sent shockwaves through the medical community and the public.
The Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute remembers the gifted doctor by saying he knew “that while he could save hundreds of lives through surgery, he could save thousands more through research”. Chang went on to study and practice around the world before returning to Australia.
Cause of Victor Chang death
Chang died on July 4, 1991, at Mosman following two gunshot wounds to the head in a failed extortion attempt; he was cremated. The killing of a surgeon who was widely respected for his talent, kindness, and dedication prompted a national outpouring of shock and grief.
Funeral of Victor Chang
The funeral of Dr. Victor Chang was held at St. Mary’s Cathedral. Chang was given a state funeral, and in 1999, he was voted Australian of the Century at the People’s Choice Awards.
Obituary of Victor Chang
Victor Chang was born in Shanghai on November 25, 1936. And died in 1999.