The Compass Fall 2023 | Page 6


Man of Great Heart : Dr . William C . “ Bill ” Roberts

Beloved and renowned physician passed away at age 90 .

n June , the Baylor Scott & White Health family lost someone dear to our hearts : William C . “ Bill ” Roberts ,
MD , former executive director of the Baylor Heart and Vascular Institute and the innovative founder of the Heart-to- Heart Program at Baylor University Medical Center . He died peacefully at his home in Dallas at the age of 90 .
Dr . Roberts was well known as a pioneer in cardiovascular pathology , a prolific writer of more than 1,600 peerreviewed academic articles and a longtime editor-in-chief of both The American
Journal of Cardiology and Baylor University Medical Center Proceedings . Dr . Roberts spent the first 30 years of his distinguished career at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda , Maryland , and the next 30 years at Baylor University Medical Center . The six decades he devoted to research impacted countless lives .
A caring gentleman with a charming Southern accent , Dr . Roberts was a humble and gracious mentor to generations of physicians , and his generosity of spirit made him a dear friend to many . He was the son of the first cardiologist in the South ;
“ Heaven just admitted a very special doctor and human being .”
Nancy Vish , PhD | President and CNO , BSW Heart and Vascular Hospital
“ Cardiology and the world lost an icon . Bill Roberts was an amazing person , physician and friend . He will be greatly missed .”
Robert C . Stoler , MD Interventional cardiologist , BUMC
“ He taught us all so much ! And he did it in such a humble , kind and effective manner … I was so fortunate to be his student and to call him a friend and colleague .”
Michael Emmett , MD Chairman emeritus of internal medicine , BUMC
“ The combination of his tireless spirit of investigation and his genuine kindness towards whoever walked through his always-open door represents a major part of his legacy and should be an enduring lesson for all of us in medicine .”
Dan Meyer , MD Chief of cardiac transplantation , BSW Heart and Vascular Hospital
“ Dr . Roberts ’ partnership with the Heart-to-Heart program , where heart transplant recipients joined him one-on-one to sit with their old heart , was a priceless experience that our future patients will never get a chance to have . We will miss him immensely . ”
Shelley Hall , MD Chief of transplant cardiology and mechanical support / heart failure , BUMC the father of four children , including Charles Roberts , MD , a cardiovascular surgeon at Baylor University Medical Center ; the grandfather of 11 and the great-grandfather of four .
He spent his lifetime studying cardiovascular disease , all the while living life with undeniable heart .
Numerous heartfelt tributes were recently published or received by Dr . Roberts ’ family and several are included below .
“ The late William C . Roberts was the finest teacher and most important mentor I ever had … He was a hard taskmaster but also fair , demanding nothing less than perfection from all of us but also from himself .”
Renu Virmani , MD President , CVPath Institute , Gaithersburg , MD
“ Words simply cannot express what Dr . William Roberts did for the field of preventive cardiology and the countless people he touched over the years with his writing , editing , teaching , presentations , conferences , exemplary volunteer service and mentoring . I was one of them .”
Barry A . Franklin , PhD Preventive cardiologist , Beaumont Health
“ We are so grateful for the incredible impact and legacy he made at BUMC — we ’ re a better hospital because of him .”
Kyle Armstrong | President , BUMC
“ The nearly eight years I worked with Dr . Roberts were marked with triumphs and challenges , laughter and many great memories . The lessons I learned from him were not limited to medicine but also how to live life , tackle it head on and always remain humble . I will cherish it forever .”
Saba Ilyas | BSW Research Institute
Photo courtesy of BUMC , Office of Dr . Roberts , licensed under CC 3.0