In the early night of 6 June 2011, less than two weeks after having been confronted with the news of a severe illness, Wim van der Giessen passed away. Wim (1954) studied medicine at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam and started his career in research as a medical student at the section of Experimental Cardiology. He finalised his training in cardiology in 1987 and was appointed as staff member in the section of experimental cardiology. Here, we built a team in experimental interventional cardiology. Wim started his formal training in interventional cardiology while maintaining his role as supervisor of the experimental interventional team. In 2005 he was appointed Professor at the Erasmus University on the subject of “Pathophysiology of acute coronary syndromes”. He was a member of the scientific counsel of the Interuniversity Cardiology Institute of the Netherlands (ICIN) and treasurer of the Dutch Atherosclerosis Society.
Wim approached life with a unique sense of humour and nuance. Every question was approached with a period of silence, followed by the characteristic twisting his moustache and a meditative “Hmmm”. Then an answer would inexorably follow that, even for the most delicate of issues, was of an unprecedented clarity and simplicity. We will remember him for his unperturbed nature, his quiet determination and warm character. We are forever grateful for his contributions to the field of experimental interventional cardiology and we will continue to build on his legacy.