At the airport yesterday I saw a new book on Professor Chris Barnard. It’s fifty years since the world’s first heart transplant and the famous surgeon and playboy is in the news again.
A while ago I had found Aitch’s 1983 diary . Her entries to record her overtime as a cardiovascular perfusionist doing heart ops had abbreviations likes “palliative VSD 1.5hrs; MVR 1.5hrs; CVG”. One of her entries in December was ’17h00 Wed 14 Dec Farewell for CNB, Nurses Lounge, Clarendon House’. I knew that CNB meant Christiaan Neethling Barnard as she worked with him at the time. She would run the heart-lung machine to oxygenate the blood while he and the other surgeons worked on the patient’s heart.
I had time before my flight so I thought I wonder if they have anything about his retirement in the book? and flipped through it.
And there she was on page 216:
So I had to buy it to show the pic to Jess and Tom. Jess said “Cool”; Tom shrugged: “We knew Mom was famous!”