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The Vascular Surgery division was created in July of 1969. This new Division of Vascular, trauma, and Transplantation Surgery was developed under the leadership of Dr. George Johnson, Jr., with Drs. Herbert Proctor and Stanley Mandel, both from the existing faculty in General Surgery. The division ad the responsibility of providing instruction to medical students and house staff int the area of general surgery with an emphasis on trauma, shock, and vascular surgery. it was also responsible for the continued support of the program in transplantation biology. Dr. Proctor was Chief of Trauma and Dr. Mandel Chief of Transplantation.

In 1973, Dr. Noel McDevitt, a former student and graduate of the General Surgery program, joined the Vascular Division as the fourth attending surgeon. Under his direction, a labratory for the clinical study of peripheral vascular disease was established.

Dr. Blair A. Keagy, who had completed the programs in General Surgery and Cardiothoracic Surgery at UNC, was the first vascular fellow. In 1981, he was given a primary appointment in Cardiothoracic surgery, with one-quarter of his time devoted to vascular surgery. In 1991 Dr. Keagy moved to work full-time in Vascular Surgery, as Chief of the Vascular Surgery service and in August 1993 he was named Chief of the newly created Division of Vascular Surgery.

Excerpts taken from “Legends and Legacies. A Look Inside. Four Decades of Surgery at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 1952 – 1993