Hirsch MD receives Distinguished Alumnus Award at 2003 Commencement
Charles S. Hirsch has served at the chief medical examiner for
The City of New York since 1989. He received his undergraduate
degree from the University of Illinois, Urbana in 1958 with
high distinction and graduated from the University of Illinois
College of Medicine, Chicago in 1962. Dr. Hirsch has been stimulated
by both the intellectual and the interactive dimensions of forensic
pathology since he chose his career over 35 years ago. Dr. Hirsch
received the Distinguished Alumnus Award and delivered the commencement
speech "Specialty Selection in Medical Practice" at
Medical School Graduation, May 9, 2003.
Chief Medical Examiner on September 11, 2001, in response to
the North Tower of teh World Trade Center being struck, Dr.
Hirsch and six aides traveled to the disaster to prepare a temporary
morgue. As the first tower fell, Dr. Hirsch and his colleagues
were hurled to the ground and many were injured. Dr. Hirsch
and his staff have faced this historic challenge of trying to
identify the nearly 20,000 body parts recovered from the disaster
site. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner is widely applauded
for its dealings with victims' families, sharing hopes for DNA
breakthroughs and giving choices about when - or if - to be
notified when another piece of a loved one is identified.