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Laman A. Gray, Jr., M.D.
Robert D. Dowling, M.D.

News Releases

September 8, 2003
Linda McGinity Jackson,
Vice President of Public Relations,
or Mary Jennings, PR Manager

Golf Tournament Held September 11, American Heart Association Walk Is September 13

Louisville, KY – The family and friends of artificial heart patient Tom Christerson are honoring his legacy through two events:

Central City Golf Tournament on September 11 at 1 p.m.
The Tom Christerson Memorial Golf Scramble begins with a 1 p.m. Central Time tee off Thursday, September 11 at the Central City Country Club. The Central City Lions and Rotary Clubs, groups that Christerson was active in, sponsor the event, which is in its first year. A Golf Clinic will be held at 6 p.m., followed by dinner. An entry fee of $50 includes golf and dinner.

The money raised at the event will benefit the Tom Christerson and Family Nursing Scholarship, established by the Grand Lakes Yacht Club through the Jewish Hospital Foundation. Christerson’s friends created the scholarship to recognize the outstanding nursing care Tom received while he was a patient at Jewish Hospital. The scholarship will be used to train Jewish Hospital employers who want to advance their careers in the cardiovascular field.

‘Tom’s Team’ Walks in American Heart Association Event September 13 at 9 a.m.
Members of the Christerson family will walk to help raise money for the American Heart Association during the organization’s Heart Walk. The walk begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, September 13, at Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom. Tom Christerson’s wife, Speedy, his son Ken, his daughter, Patti Pryor, his granddaughter, Kelly Binkley, and his great granddaughter Ellen Binkley and other family members will join some of the staff who cared for Christerson while he was a patient at Jewish Hospital. Together, they make up “Tom’s Team,” to walk in his honor.

Both events are near the date Christerson underwent his landmark surgery. On September 13, 2001, a Jewish Hospital/University of Louisville team, led by surgeons Laman Gray, M.D., and Rob Dowling, M.D., implanted the AbioCor® Implantable Replacement Heart. Christerson was the second person in the world to receive the heart and was the first artificial heart patient to return home. Christerson lived with his heart for 17 months before he died on February 7, 2003.

Donations for the Tom Christerson Nursing Scholarship Fund can be sent to Jewish Hospital Foundation, 200 Abraham Flexner Way, Louisville, KY 40202. Donations for the Heart Walk can be sent to the American Heart Association, 333 Guthrie Street, Louisville, KY 40202.

Jewish Hospital is one of the premier heart hospitals in the United States, dedicated to excellence in clinical care, research and education. Jewish Hospital has been the site of many “firsts,” including the world’s first and second successful AbioCor® artificial heart implants and the world’s first and nation’s second successful hand transplant.


©2001 Jewish Hospital, University of Louisville Health Sciences Center, ABIOMED, Inc.
Jewish Hospital University of Louisville Health Sciences Center