FAIRFIELD, N.J., April 16, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Dr. Victor F. Greco of Drums, PA, was awarded the 2012 UNICO National Marconi Science Award by UNICO National President Glenn Pettinato at a gala award ceremony during UNICO's Board of Directors meeting, Saturday, March 24th, 2012 in Myrtle Beach, SC.
Dr. Greco, a general and thoracic surgeon, helped develop the Heart-Lung Machine, which allowed surgeons to break the last barrier that remained - the ability to operate on the heart, both on coronary vessels and other defects - but more importantly, to be able to open the heart and replace damaged valves and correct defects while the patient's heart and lung functions were performed by the machine. Coronary artery surgery, valve replacements, aneurysm corrections and congenital cardio-vascular conditions are now performed as routine. Literally millions now and in the future have and will be saved and lead normal productive lives because of this technological development.
Dr. Greco was also a member of the team that performed the first successful open heart surgery in 1953 - on a fifteen-year-old female who was dying because of an intra-atrial septal defect. She lived another 50 years of a productive life. Dr. Greco is the last surviving professional member of the first team.
"Dr. Greco is an outstanding recipient of the UNICO National Marconi Science Award," commented Andre' DiMino, Marconi Science Award Chair and past national president of UNICO. "He exemplifies the great accomplishments and contributions of Italian Americans to technology and science that UNICO honors each year with this prestigious award. We are honored to have Dr. Greco join our select group of UNICO National Marconi Science Award winners."
On receiving the award, Dr. Greco stated, "It is such an honor to be recognized by this great UNICO organization with this prestigious Marconi Award. I am highly honored and humbled for even being considered."
UNICO's Marconi Science Award is presented to a U.S. citizen of Italian descent involved in the physical sciences, such as electronics, physics, chemistry, etc. The Award was established in 1995 to annually recognize a living scientist who exemplifies Marconi's vast scientific and creative accomplishments through their own life achievements.
UNICO National, the largest Italian American service organization in the U.S., was founded in Waterbury, CT in 1922. Members work to support charitable, educational, scientific and literary causes while promoting Italian heritage and combating negative stereotyping.
SOURCE UNICO National