SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center is mourning the loss of Dr. Casimir “Casey” Firlit, who died on Dec. 18, 2012, at 73 years old.
Dr. Firlit was director of Reconstructive Urology, Neuro-Urology and Fetal Urology at SSM Cardinal Glennon since 2003. He was also an adjunct faculty member at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. He dedicated his life to helping children with complex problems become healthy and happy.
“Dr. Firlit was a wonderful physician, teacher and mentor to many clinicians throughout the years,” said Sherlyn Hailstone, president of SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center. “His kindness, compassion and ability to relate to the children he served were legendary. He left an impression on SSM Cardinal Glennon that can never be replaced.”
Dr. Firlit received his M.D. and Ph.D. in Pharmacology from Loyola University of Chicago. He completed his clinical fellowship in Pediatric Urology at Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago. He was board-certified in Urology and was featured as one of the Best Doctors in St. Louis from 2005 through the present year.
He served as chief of Pediatric Urology at Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago from 1979 to 2002 and professor of Urology for Northwestern University in Chicago for two decades before relocating to St. Louis to lead the Division of Pediatric Urology at SSM Cardinal Glennon. During his time in Chicago, Dr. Firlit was the youngest urologist to be promoted to full professor of Urology at Northwestern University.
Throughout his career, Dr. Firlit inspired many residents to follow in his footsteps and pursue a career in pediatric urology. He was directly involved in mentoring dozens of young pediatric urologists. He was a natural teacher who took great pleasure in creating innovative techniques to benefit his patients.
“Dr. Firlit had a passion for helping develop other surgeons,” said Dr. Dennis Vane, surgeon-in-chief at SSM Cardinal Glennon and chair of Pediatric Surgery at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. “He took his responsibility of cultivating the next generation of doctors very seriously. He was a thorough physician with a great love for his patients, and he was committed to instilling those same virtues in the doctors he trained.”
His love of children and helping improve their lives influenced Dr. Firlit every day. In a 2011 profile with St. Louis Magazine, Dr. Firlit eloquently put his passion into words: “I found that kids, in spite of the travesty, they have the resilience to go through this and come out very positive. It’s what just lit my fire.”
Dr. Firlit is survived by wife Barbara, son Matthew and daughters Michelle and Rebecca. Services will be held in the Chicago area. A local memorial service will be planned for a later date.