American Surgical Association Transactions

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1931 - 2015

James William Kilman, M.D., 1931 - 2015

It is with great sadness that we share news of the passing of our dear friend and colleague James W. Kilman, a respected leader of cardiothoracic surgery at the Ohio State University Medical Center and Nationwide Children’s Hospital at the age 84. He passed away Thursday, December 10, 2015.

He was born January 22, 1931 in Terre Haute, Indiana to the late Arthur and Irene (Piker) Kilman. In the early part of Jim's life, he was a very active Boy Scout and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout. When he was 15, he was awarded the opportunity to travel to Paris, France for the Boy Scout World Jamboree and represent all of the scouts in the state of Indiana. He later went on to serve in the United States Navy.

He earned his bachelor's degree in Chemistry and Mathematics from Indiana State University and his medical doctorate from Indiana University School of Medicine. An accomplished surgeon, he held a medical license in Indiana before coming to Ohio in 1966. His research resulted in over 140 medical articles that were published in various journals. He held many titles including: Professor of Surgery and Veterinary Clinical Sciences and later was awarded Professor Emeritus for The Ohio State University College of Medicine. He served as the Chief of the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery from 1976 -1980. He was the former Chairman of the Department of Thoracic Surgery at Children's Hospital, Columbus, OH where he helped establish pediatric cardiac surgery. Further, he was a consultant Thoracic Surgeon for the Veterans Administration Hospitals, Dayton, OH and he held courtesy or consultant privileges at every hospital in the Columbus, Ohio area. He was a past-president of the Columbus and Franklin County Academy of Medicine.

In addition to being a fellow of the American Surgical Association he was a member of the American College of Surgeons, American Medical Association, Academy of Medicine of Columbus and Franklin County, American Thoracic Society, Columbus Surgical Society, Society of University Surgeons, Central Surgical Association, Society for Vascular Surgery, Western Surgical Association, and The Society of Thoracic Surgeons. He was a former President of the American Boxer Club and member of Kiwanis. He was also a member of the Phi Chi Medical Fraternity.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a daughter and a half-sister. Dr Kilman is survived by his loving wife of 47 years, Priscilla, a son and daughter, and six grandchildren.

He will always be remembered as a pioneer in pediatric and adult cardiothoracic surgery in central Ohio and beyond.