It is with profound sadness that I share heartbreaking news of the passing of Dr. George Kao, radiation oncologist, known to many as the “father” of cancer care in Southern Illinois. Dr. Kao died Saturday morning at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale. Funeral arrangements are pending at this time.
Dr. Kao cared for tens of thousands of patients throughout his 28 years at SIH and planted the seeds for what is today the SIH Cancer Institute. He is remembered for his sense of humor, exuberance, unfaltering commitment to his patients and love for his team. Dr. Marsha Ryan, a longtime colleague who helped recruit Dr. Kao in 1990, said it best: “He made us all better.”
Please join me in expressing my deepest sympathies to Dr. Kao’s wife, Janet, twin daughters Alexia and Alaina, and the close friends and coworkers he called “family”.