Miller School of Medicine Icon Dr. Nancy Fawcett Dies

The University of Miami Miller School of Medicine lost a legend on September 16 when pediatrician Nancy Fawcett, M.D., died at the age of 85. Fawcett, who spent 52 years caring for children at Holtz Children’s Hospital and was one of the university’s longest tenured professors, was loved by all those she taught or treated. Despite retiring in 2012, she continued to volunteer as a professor emeritus, influencing the lives of those around her.

“Dr. Fawcett beamed light and learning for everyone who knew her. She was warm, inspiring and epitomized humility,” said Judy Schaechter, M.D., M.B.A., Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Miami Health System. “She was the definition of lifelong learner, forever both a teacher and a student. She role-modeled both. Dr. Fawcett was never one to tell you what you must know without also doing it herself. Even as a senior-level and most respected professor, she pulled out her notebook at every lecture, entering notes of what she heard, even if she knew all the facts. She listened with full attention and posed the smartest of questions, always with a smile.”

It is estimated that throughout her career Fawcett taught 7,000 students and 1,000 residents, but according to family, her lifelong ambition was to give children the opportunity to live healthy lives.

“She was enthusiastic about every patient, and every person, conveying a compassion that was enveloping,” Schaechter said. “She was so sincere in her approach to learning and life that it changed people. One wanted to be near her warmth, to learn from her and to catch her essence and hold onto it.

“Dr. Fawcett will be missed by generations of students and colleagues who admired, respected and loved her. Each of them has become a better physician because of her. Every one of them knows that a part of her kindness, goodness, truth, warmth, thirst for knowledge, ability to connect and perseverance is inside of them, for that is what a great teacher and gifted pediatrician such as Dr. Fawcett gives. She gave it to us in abundant doses.”

For more about Fawcett’s remarkable work, click here to read a Miami Herald story about her passing.

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