RIP, C. Everett Koop
USA Today reports that the former Surgeon General under President Reagan passed away at age 96:
C. Everett Koop, the former surgeon general who brought frank talk about AIDS into American homes, has died at his home in Hanover, N.H., officials at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth announced today. He was 96.
Koop, a pediatric surgeon with a conservative reputation and a distinctive beard, was surgeon general from 1981 to 1989, during the Reagan administration and the early months of the administration of George H.W. Bush.
"Dr. Koop will be remembered for his colossal contributions to the health and well-being of patients and communities in the U.S. and around the world," said a statement released by Chip Souba, dean of the Geisel School of Medicine and Joseph O'Donnell, senior scholar at the C. Everett Koop Institute. "As one of our country's greatest Surgeons General, he effectively promoted health and the prevention of disease, thereby improving millions of lives in our nation and across the globe."
He is best remembered for his official 1986 report on AIDS – a plain-spoken 36-page document that talked about the way AIDS spread (through sex, needles and blood), the ways it did not spread (through casual contact in homes, schools and workplaces) and how people could protect themselves.
Found via Twitchy, which rounds up the Twitter reason to Koop's passing.