S. Ward Casscells

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S. Ward "Trip" Casscells[1] (March 18, 1952 – October 14, 2012)[2] was an American cardiologist who served with the U.S. Army in Iraq and later was Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs.[3] Among other honors, he was the recipient of the Distinguished Public Service Medal, the Army's Order of Military Medical Merit, and the General Maxwell Thurman Award.


Samuel Ward Casscells III was born in Wilmington, Delaware and graduated from Tower Hill School in 1970. He then graduated cum laude from Yale College with a B.S. degree in 1974 and magna cum laude from Harvard Medical School with his M.D. degree in 1979. Casscells was board certified in internal medicine after completing his residency at Beth Israel Hospital from 1979 to 1983. He was then board certified in cardiology after completing a fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital from 1982 to 1985.[4]

Starting in 1992, he was employed by the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. He also served in the Army Reserve,[4] receiving the Meritorious Service Medal and retiring as a colonel.[2]


Casscells was the son of S. Ward Casscells (November 15, 1915 – February 8, 1996)[5] and Sarah Oleda (Dyson) Casscells (January 5, 1921 – August 18, 2002).[6] His father was an orthopedic surgeon who had helped invent arthroscopic surgery[1] and had served in the Army Medical Corps as a trauma surgeon with the Eighth Evacuation Hospital during World War II,[7] retiring from service as a captain.[5] His parents were married in a civil ceremony in Chesterfield County, South Carolina on December 22, 1948[8] while his mother was completing her law degree at the University of Virginia[7] and again in an Episcopal ceremony in Fairfax, Virginia on June 11, 1949 after her graduation.[9]

After his death from prostate cancer at his home in Washington, D.C.,[1] the younger Casscells was interred next to his parents in Arlington National Cemetery on July 19, 2013.[2]


  1. ^ a b c Willerson, James T. (2013). "S. Ward Casscells, MD". Transactions of the American Clinical and Climatological Association. Vol. 124. pp. lxxxviii–xc. PMC 3715911.
  2. ^ a b c "Casscells, Samuel Ward". ANCExplorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  3. ^ Merrell, Ronald C.; Doarn, Charles R. (2012). "Samuel Ward Casscells III, M.D." Telemedicine and e-Health. 18 (10): 722–723. doi:10.1089/tmj.2012.9984.
  4. ^ a b "Biographical and Financial Information Requested of Nominees". Nominations Before the Senate Armed Services Committee, First Session, 110th Congress (PDF). Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office. 2008. pp. 491–525. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  5. ^ a b "Casscells, Samuel W". ANCExplorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  6. ^ "Casscells, Oleda Dyson". ANCExplorer. U.S. Army. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  7. ^ a b "Obituary: S. Ward Casscells, M.D. 1915–1996". The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery. Vol. 78, no. 8. August 1996. p. 1289. Retrieved 2021-05-28.
  8. ^ Original Marriage licenses, 1911-1951. Chesterfield County, South Carolina.
  9. ^ "Certificate of Marriage". No. 13873. Richmond, Virginia: Commonwealth of Virginia. 1949.

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