Dr N S Murali, a well-known surgeon, a key figure in the Voluntary Health Services hospital in Chennai, the founder of the Seethapathy Clinic and Hospital in Chennai, and my uncle, died suddenly while on a break in Coventry today. He was 73. His wife had died, equally unexpectedly, a month ago.
The phrase "a towering figure" is over-used, but he was one. The shock is palpable. But his work will survive: both directly (his son and daughter both work in his hospital) and indirectly (he influenced many, many people in the city, and probably outside too). RIP.
[UPDATE 06/05/09: Obituary in The Hindu.]