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Gerald Mark Sloan, M.D.
1951 – 2014

Gerald Mark Sloan died peacefully after a long illness on Tuesday, May 20, at the age of 63.

He is survived by his wife of 26 years, Elizabeth, his two children David and Emily, and his sister Diane Gordon of New York.

Dr. Sloan was born in New Haven, CT to Edward and Anne Slutsky and attended Hopkins Grammar School before graduating Summa Cum Laude from Harvard and Harvard Medical School. He was a renowned specialist in pediatric plastic surgery and in 1995 joined the faculty of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) School of Medicine as Chief of the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and Medical Director of the UNC Craniofacial Center. In 1996, he was awarded the Ethel F. and James A. Valone Distinguished Professorship. Prior to coming to UNC, he was director of the Craniofacial Cleft Center at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, and Professor of Surgery at the University of Southern California. His research and practice focused on the surgical treatment of cleft palate-related speech problems.

Gerry Sloan was the fourth Chief of Plastic Surgery at UNC, where he led the division from 1995 to 2002. During this time he was challenged to advance the quality of plastic surgery at UNC and make it a center of excellence and give the residents the best possible training. Gerry truly brought UNC Plastic Surgery into the modern era, introducing new procedures in craniofacial surgery, microsurgery, congenital hand surgery, and endoscopic plastic surgery. His success as a educator was due to the wonderful relationships he nurtured, with patients, their families, and other health care providers. Under the direction of George Sheldon as Chair of Surgery and Anthony Meyer as Chief of the Division of General Surgery, Gerry rebuilt the entire Division of Plastic Surgery and recruited junior surgeons who today are leaders in academic plastic surgery.

He was named a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American College of Surgeons and was a diplomate of the National Board of Medical Examiners, American Board of Surgery and American Board of Plastic Surgery. Dr. Sloan published numerous articles in medical journals, including his pioneering work on the treatment of infantile hemangiomas. He was a consultant for ongoing research at the National Cancer Institute’s Surgery Branch and a member of the Scientific Advisory Panel of the Center for Craniofacial Molecular Biology.

Gerry was a kind, considerate and gentle person and treated each patient with the utmost respect and cared for them so well. He will be missed by so many people. There are many patients and children who benefited from his expertise. They all say, “Thank you Dr. Sloan for helping me when I was in need.”

He evaluated the problem and operated appropriately to give the patient the best care possible. He was a teacher and loved teaching. He taught by example, and the many plastic surgeons who trained under Gerry Sloan will always appreciate the good foundation that he gave them.

The Plastic Surgery teaching meetings were expansive and productive. He was always willing to listen to the views of others and appreciated the input from the residents. The day he told the plastic surgery meeting that he was retiring for health reasons, the residents cried.

Gerry’s impressive taste in music ranged from chamber works by Schubert to Bruce Springsteen’s The River and Greetings from Asbury Park. He even attended the famous Woodstock Festival in 1969, remembering and reciting every detail, from Jimi Hendrix’s version of the Star-Spangled Banner, to Ravi Shankar’s mesmerizing sitar performance, to the explosive and incendiary set by the Who. His appreciation of music extended across the generations to hip-hop, with his favorite rappers being Nas, 50 Cent, and Eminem. He was an avid reader, and a scholar and collector of ancient Greek coins. He appreciated and collected fine wine and enjoyed cooking for family and friends.

A memorial service was held on Tuesday, May 27 2014 at Amity United Methodist Church in Chapel Hill.

Wolfgang Losken, M.D.
C. Scott Hultman, M.D.

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