NYC Medical Examiner Retires; 9/11 Work Pivotal

Wednesday, Feb 6, 2013  |  Updated 4:41 PM EDT
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NYC Medical Examiner Retires; 9/11 Work Pivotal

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New York City's long-serving medical examiner who helped identify remains from the 9/11 attacks is retiring.

Dr. Charles Hirsch was appointed in 1989 by then-Mayor Ed Koch, who recently died.

Mayor Bloomberg announced Hirsch's retirement on Wednesday, calling him "a visionary leader whose work earned him world renown and helped make New York City a global leader in the field."

The 75-year-old Hirsch oversaw major advancements in DNA identification and mass-fatality response operations. His quest to identify the nearly 20,000 body parts collected after 9/11 continues.

On the day of the attacks, he was injured in the collapse of the south tower but returned to work despite having suffered broken ribs and cuts.

Hirsch's longtime deputy, Dr. Barbara Sampson, succeeds him as acting chief medical examiner.

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