Michelangelo Gangemi (1949–2017)
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On 19 September 2017, Michelangelo Gangemi passed away after a cruel and tumultuous illness, which he faced with courage and great dignity.
He was born on 28 April 1949 in Rosarno, a small village in deep southern Italy.
He joined the University Clinic of Neurosurgery, directed by his mentor, Professor Faust D’Andrea, first as a student and then, after his graduation at Medical School of the University of Naples in 1975, as a resident in neurosurgery. There he completed his neurosurgical residency in 1978.
Between 1978 and 1979 he continued his surgical training as a Fellow at the Neurosurgery Department of the Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Northwestern University under Professor Anthony Raimondi.
In 1980, he moved to Paris with his family, to work as Assistant Etranger at the Neurosurgery Division of the Hopital Necker-Enfants Malades. Under the guidance of Professor Jean François Hirsch, he showed a keen interest in craniosynostosis and craniofacial anomalies, contributing to the development of several surgical techniques for the treatment of these conditions, along with Daniel Marchac, Dominique Renier and Christian Sainte-Rose.
He stepped up in the academic and clinical hierarchy based upon his proficient scientific and clinical skills, becoming a Post-doctoral Researcher, Associate Professor and, finally, Full Professor of Neurosurgery at the Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II.
His major interests were infantile neurosurgery and ventricular endoscopy, which saw him as pioneer and ambassador in Italy and abroad. He was an outstanding teacher and surgeon.
During the course of his career, he published more than 130 articles, most of which were published in important international journals, and four books.
He was the key figure and active member in the Societé de Neurochirurgie de Langue Française, the European Society for Paediatric Neurosurgery, the Società Italiana Basicranio and, most of all, the Società Italiana di Neurochirurgia (SINch), for which he served as Counselor, Secretary and, finally, President.
His professional achievements were mirrored by an equally rich personal life, where the family, with their beloved daughters and the three grandchildren, were foremost in his mind. In addition to neurosurgery, he dedicated himself to sport—tennis and skiing in particular; he cultivated a passion for music and he loved the sea.
We will miss his dedication, innate elegance and outgoing personality.