CINCINNATI, Dec. 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dr. Henry Heimlich, 96, passed away last night at Christ Hospital in Cincinnati, after complications from a massive heart attack suffered on Monday in his home at Deupree House in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Cincinnati, Ohio. Deupree House is owned and managed by Episcopal Retirement Services.
His family has issued the following statement:
We are saddened by the loss of our father, Dr. Henry J. Heimlich, who passed away earlier today at the age of 96.
Dad was a hero to many people around the world for a simple reason: He helped save untold numbers of lives through the innovation of common-sense procedures and devices. But he was not only a physician and medical inventor, he was also a humanitarian and a loving and devoted son, husband, father, and grandfather.
From the time Dad began his medical career in New York City, to the time he practiced as a thoracic surgeon in Cincinnati, he was committed to coming up with simple, effective ideas that helped save lives and significantly improved people's quality of life.
He grew up the son of a social worker in New York State, which deeply influenced his drive to help other people. He loved the ocean and served in the US Navy during World War II, volunteering for extra-hazardous duty, which led to him to working as a doctor behind enemy lines in the Gobi Desert of China. Later, he named his small sailboat, The Repose, after the hospital ship he spent time on after serving in China.
Most know of Dad's name for the Heimlich Maneuver, the method he devised to save people who are choking. The "maneuver," as he called it, not only has saved countless lives, it allows anyone, even children, to save the life of a choking victim. But as his memoir, Heimlich's Maneuvers explains, Dad accomplished much more.
As a young surgeon, Dad was the first American to devise and perform a total organ replacement. Later, he came up with a device that saved thousands of soldiers' lives during the Vietnam War. The Heimlich Chest Drain Valve is still used worldwide for patients undergoing chest surgery.
Dad was firm in his convictions and passionate for his causes. He didn't play politics well. Instead, he was single-minded in his quest to find better ways to save lives. Dad dreamed that anything was possible in the field of medicine, even when critics said otherwise.
The family requests that those who wish to honor our father's legacy make a contribution to Heimlich Heroes, a nonprofit organization that teaches children around the world how to save a life with the Heimlich Maneuver. For more information on the life of Dr. Heimlich or to make a donation to Heimlich Heroes, please visit: http://henryheimlich.com.
Contact: Bryan Reynolds, Integrated Marketing Director – Episcopal Retirement Services
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SOURCE Episcopal Retirement Services