Tribute to Gene Siskel

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Maggie Hampshire, RN, BSN, OCN
Last Modified: November 1, 2001

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We would like to pay tribute to Gene Siskel, journalist, film critic, family man and true "Friend of OncoLink". Mr. Siskel died February 20, 1999 from apparent complications of a brain tumor.

The Editors of OncoLink met Mr. Siskel on April 20th of 1998 when he and his long time colleague Roger Ebert of "Siskel and Ebert" fame were hosts at the Third Annual Global Information Infrastructure (GII) Awards in Chicago. It was a real thrill to receive the award from such prestigious journalists and critics. They were such gracious hosts and we were enthralled at the way their on-screen banter carried over beyond the movie business into the Internet community. We were all truly impressed at the way they commented during the ceremony about each winning web site and appeared to have taken the time to genuinely review each one. OncoLink's award was toward the end of the night. Our excitement grew as we wondered what they would possibly say about our website. Our hearts swelled as Roger Ebert admitted that although they had indeed needed to review each site prior to the cermony they were already familiar with our site! He explained that they had a "friend" with a brain tumor who needed information and they found it on OncoLink! They proceeded to give us their famous "Two Thumbs Up" sign. We bragged about it for weeks!

After the ceremony Mr. Siskel did mention to us that he would be having surgery to remove a growth on his brain. He was vague about the details but seemed in good spirits and was expecting everything to go well. He underwent surgery in May of 1998 and returned to the syndicated "Siskel & Ebert at the Movies" very quickly. Earlier this month, he announced that he was taking time off to rest and further recuperate from the surgery. He died Saturday at Evanston Hospital in Illinois.

He will be truly missed.


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