Connie Culp Bio – Wiki
Connie Culp was described as a “pioneer” after she became the first person to ever receive a face transplant. Her husband shot her with a shotgun in 2004, disfiguring her. She died Thursday, July 30, 2020.
Connie Culp outlived many people who have undergone face transplant surgeries. The Cleveland Clinic, where her surgery was performed, said she was the longest-living face transplant patient to date.
We are saddened by the loss of Connie Culp, the first face transplant recipient in the U.S.
She was an inspiration to all of us at Cleveland Clinic. pic.twitter.com/gvuJCzf7Jd
— ClevelandClinicNews (@CleClinicNews) July 31, 2020
She was 57 years old.
Connie Culp Died
The Cleveland Clinic announced her death on Twitter, calling her a “pioneer.” Her decision to undergo the first face transplant in history was “an enduring gift for all humanity,” doctors said.
Connie Culp, the first person in the US to receive a near-total face transplant, has died, according to the Cleveland Clinic, where the procedure was performed in 2008. She was 57 years old. https://t.co/nHJ2FqZCqN
— CNN (@CNN) August 1, 2020
Culp was shot by her then-husband, Thomas, who turned the gun on himself in 2004. Both Culp and her husband survived the shooting, and he was sentenced to seven years in prison. A deceased donor, Anna Kasper, gave Culp the gift of a new face after Culp underwent dozens of corrective surgeries. Culp met Kasper’s daughter, Becky Kasper, which was part of an ABC News special.
Connie Culp was the survivor of a brutal act of domestic violence. Her husband, Thomas, shot her in 2004, and then turned the gun on himself. Both Culp and her husband survived. He was sentenced to seven years in prison, NBC reported. Her cause of death has not been released.
Culp first arrived at the Cleveland Clinic for plastic surgery in 2004. She underwent nearly 30 surgeries before the received the nation’s most extensive face transplant in history. In December 2008, doctors began a 22-hour procedure to replace 80 percent of Culp’s face, NBC reported. The donor, Anna Kasper, was deceased.
Culp’s face transplant surgery was the fourth to be performed in the world, but her transplant surgery was more extensive, the Associated Press reported in 2009. In April 2009, doctors at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston performed the nation’s second face transplant on Dallas Wiens, a man who was disfigured in a freak accident. The first face transplant surgery was performed in 2005 in France on Isabelle Dinoire, a woman who had been mauled by her dog.
Connie Culp’s husband, Thomas Culp, shot and disfigured her in an act of domestic violence before turning the gun on himself. He was sentenced to seven years in prison and released in 2011. She told ABC News in 2009 that although she was going through a divorce from her husband, she still loved him.
“”I always will [love him.] I mean, I have two kids to him,” Culp said. “But you know what? I cannot be with him anymore.”
She said she had spoken to him briefly on their anniversary, but she wanted to move on and did not want to talk about the attack that shattered her face.
“I won’t let anybody talk about that,” said Culp. “I spent six years thinking about it. And you know what? Now, it’s a new beginning. I have a new face. I’m a new me.”
WKYC reported Culp spent the decade of her life after the transplant sharing her story, speaking out about domestic violence, educating about transplant surgeries and encouraging those who would undergo transplants.