World Famous Houston Heart Surgeon Denton Cooley Has Died

 Dr. Cooley performed some of the earliest heart transplants and implanted the world’s first artificial heart.

Dr. Denton Cooley
Dr. Denton Cooley

Linden Emerson, a spokeswoman for the Texas Heart Institute in Houston, says Cooley died on Friday at 96.

In 1969, Cooley implanted the world’s first artificial heart as a temporary measure while a heart transplant was arranged. A year earlier, he had performed the first successful human heart transplant in the U.S.

Cooley, spoke with Houston Public Media a few years ago after writing his memoir. He shared his vision of what being a surgeon meant back when he was developing his career:

He also talked about the kind of personality that a pioneer surgeon should have:


Subscribe to Today in Houston

Fill out the form below to subscribe our new daily editorial newsletter from the HPM Newsroom.

* required