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Year : 1975  |  Volume : 23  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 44-45



Correspondence Address:
Willy Engineer

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How to cite this article:
Engineer W. Obituary. Indian J Ophthalmol 1975;23:44-5

How to cite this URL:
Engineer W. Obituary. Indian J Ophthalmol [serial online] 1975 [cited 2023 Mar 20];23:44-5. Available from: https://journals.lww.com/ijo/pages/default.aspx/text.asp?1975/23/4/44/31443

As the golden orb rises in all its glory, heralding a new day and sheds its brilliance to the world, returning to slumber beyond the horizon at sunset; so was the life span of our beloved Dr. S.N. Cooper. Seventy-one inspiring years of service and sacrifice, devotion to the cause of the blind and an insatiable thirst for knowledge.

Dr. Cooper was born on 10th December, 1903 and took his first education at the Bharda New High School. He then studied at the Elphinstone College and later at The Grant Medical College from where he graduated in 1926. Much in contrast to the designs he had woven for himself, fate drew him to the fascinating study of the eye. He pursued the course of D.O. at the C.J. Ophthalmic Hospital and completed it in 1928. A year later, he got his D.O. (Oxom.) and D.O.M.S. (London).

Setting up private practice in 1930 was no easy task for this great teacher. After eight years of patience and toil, he got a part-time attachment as a refractionist. Fortune smiled on him in the third and fourth decade. Dr. Cooper rose from height to height and his twenty glorious years of honorary­ship at the K.E.M. Hospital saw dynamic changes in ophthalmology. The treatment of many ocular conditions was revolutionized with the advent of antibiotics and dramatic surgical procedures like Keretoplasty (Cornealgrafting) gained popularity. The era could truly be called a renaissance. It was in 1958 that he retired from K.E.M. Hospital leaving behind him a void difficult to replenish. His ability as a teacher was inexplicable; his skill as a surgeon was admirable; his knowledge as an ophthalmologist was enviable and his depth of humanity was immeasurable.

Dr. Cooper served the B. D. Petit Parsee General Hospital with great devotion from 1936 to 1964 and there after continued to give his esteemed opinion whenever sought for.

He was a great academician and had a certain keenness for research. He was instrumental in the formation of The All India Ophthalmological Society and particularly The Bombay Ophthalmic Association. He was the editor of The All India Journal of Ophthalmology from its conception until quite recently, when the yoke of responsibility and the strain of over-work burdened him beyond measure. Dr. Cooper was an eloquent speaker and had an unusual flair for writing. He had won the gold medal for the Adenwala Oration, for presenting a paper on his study on lens proteins. This study and the role of urea on the formation of lens opacities was carried out by him at the Haffkine Institute. His was a mind that had the curiosity of a child and the intelligence of a genius. This accrued in the designing of a number of devices, like the simplest workable form a Cryo-Extractor.

He was the Asian representative of the W.H.O. Trachoma Council former Vice-President of National Society for the prevention of blindness and the expert of the All India selection Board of the American College of Surgeons.

Local conferences, international congresses and any place where ophthalmology was discussed, found him there either as President or an enlightened speaker, ready to share his profound knowledge with his fellow ophthalmologists. to comprehend to a fuller extent the mysteries of Mother Nature and to leave no stone unturned in alleviating the suffering of the millions of blind at home and abroad.

No men could have wished to live a richer, fuller life; no doctor could have hoped to be more endeared to his patients; no teacher could have aspired to he closer to the hearts of his students than Dr. Cooper.

On a still night, when we lift our hearts to the star-sprinkled Heavens and count our blessings, we thank The Lord for having given us a man among men. A soul that has now sped to a land where sight cannot follow. May his celestial abode afford him peace, he so richly deserved.


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