I am deeply saddened by the passing of former Surgeon General C. Everett Koop. Dr. Koop was a fearless public servant and a pioneering pediatric surgeon. I was honored to have worked with him on several occasions.
During his nearly eight years as "America's Family Doctor," he not only advised Americans about improving their health, he brought important public health issues to the country's attention.
He was an important and early voice in the fight against AIDS, and will long be remembered as the Surgeon General who educated America about this disease.
Dr. Koop was also vocal about reducing tobacco use and stopping people from taking up smoking. While Surgeon General, he issued eight reports on tobacco, including the nation's first on the health consequences of secondhand smoke exposure.
Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, and we are grateful for his public service.