Brief Chronology

  • 1916 --Born in Brooklyn, New York (October 14)
  • 1937 --Received BS degree in zoology from Dartmouth College
  • 1938 --Married Elizabeth "Betty" Flanagan (d. 2007); they eventually have four children
  • 1941 --Received MD degree from Cornell Medical College
  • 1941-42 --Medical internship at the Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia
  • 1942-47 --Harrison Fellow in General Surgery and Research Surgery, University of Pennsylvania University School of Medicine
  • 1945-46 --Internship in pediatric surgery with William E. Ladd and Robert E. Gross at Children's Hospital in Boston
  • 1947 --Received the Doctor of Science degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
  • 1948-81 --Surgeon-in-Chief, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • 1948 --Joined the Tenth Street Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia
  • 1949 --Assistant professor of surgery, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine; associate professor of pediatric surgery, 1952; professor of pediatric surgery, 1959
  • 1956 --Established the nation's first neonatal surgical intensive care unit
  • 1971-72 --President of the American Pediatric Surgical Association
  • 1976 --Published The Right to Live, The Right to Die, an exposition of his antiabortion views
  • 1977 --Gained international attention when he became the first surgeon to separate Siamese twins joined at the heart, saving the life of one of them
  • 1981 --Confirmed as the thirteenth U.S. Surgeon General
  • 1981 --The Centers for Disease Control reported the first cases of a new infectious immune disease, named AIDS two years later
  • 1982-83 --Became involved in the "Baby Doe" controversy over the medical rights of newborns with congenital birth defects
  • 1984 --Launched Campaign for a Smoke-Free America by the Year 2000, emphasizing the health effects of second-hand smoke and the rights of non-smokers
  • 1986 --Published Surgeon General's Report on Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, becoming the first federal authority to provide explicit advice to Americans on how to protect themselves from AIDS
  • 1989 --Resigned as U.S. Surgeon General; became chairman of the National Safe Kids Campaign
  • 1990s --Lectured widely on health care reform and medical informatics, especially the dissemination of health information through digital media
  • 1991 --Published Koop: The Memoirs of America's Family Doctor
  • 1991-2013 --Senior Scholar at the C. Everett Koop Institute at Dartmouth College, an educational and outreach facility devoted to health promotion and preventive medicine, and Elizabeth DeCamp McInerny Professor of Surgery at Dartmouth Medical School
  • 2010 --Married Cora Hogue
  • 2013 --Died at home in Hanover, New Hampshire at the age of 96 (February 25)