S. Ward Casscells, the Texas cardiologist who served as the Pentagon’s top doc from April 2007 through April 2009 died on Sunday after a long battle with prostate cancer.
My fondest memory of Casscells stems from August 2008, when he spoke at a Government Executive breakfast at the National Press Club and shared the stage with a man he called “my favorite medic,” Army Sgt. Matt Sims.
Casscells could have hogged the stage, but by sharing it with Sims, wounded three times in Iraq, he managed to deliver a powerful message about military medicine from the ground up -- including Sims demonstrating how to use an advanced tourniquet on me.
Many top leaders talk about the importance of their troops -- few follow through as Casscells did with Sims at the Press Club.Casscells also gave me some private advice gratis at the Press Club based on his condition and my age -- get a PSA to check out my prostate. I guess it’s time for another.