Sigurdur Samuel Sigurdsson passed away October 9, 2020, at his home in Farmers Branch, Texas with his wife by his side.
“Siggi” was born September 30, 1951 in Reykjavik, Iceland to Luvisa Moller and Sigurdur Samuelsson. A curious and active boy, he spent many summers of his youth with his extended family in Reynisstadir, a farm in the north of Iceland. He graduated from Menntaskolinn vid Hamrahlid, in Reykjavik in 1971 and went on to attend medical school at University of Iceland, graduating cum laude in 1977. He completed his medical residency at University Hospital in Reykjavik, where he also served as Houseofficer in several departments. In 1978, he served as District Physician in Olafsvik before volunteering for the International Red Cross. As Head of the Icelandic Medical Team, Siggi spent November 1979 to March 1980 in Thailand and Cambodia providing medical care for refugees and victims of war. Upon his return to Iceland, he served as District Physician of Holmavik before completing a residency in Anesthesia and Intensive Care.
“Dr. Sig” moved to New York City in 1983 where he completed a fellowship in Cardiothoracic Anesthesia at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. In 1987, rather than take a position in Oslo, he accepted a teaching and research position at the University of Iowa College of Medicine. Sig loved teaching medical students and was awarded “Teacher of the Year” in 1989-90 from the Department of Anesthesia. He eventually went on to a position at the VA in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Sig moved to Dallas, Texas in 1992. He went into private anesthesia practice and worked continuously in the Dallas area until 2020 when his illness made it too difficult for him. He specialized in cardiac anesthesia for many years, but mainly worked in electrophysiology labs in the latter part of his career. His love of teaching never left; he took special care in guiding the new generations of medical personnel working alongside him. Known for his work ethic, kindness, and indomitable spirit, he was loved and respected by his colleagues. His patients always appreciated his gentle approach and the time he took to understand their needs and concerns.
Sig met Christine in Dallas while they were both working at Baylor Medical Center. They were married in 2000 and soon welcomed two daughters, blending them with the children from his previous marriages. Sig was a devoted husband and father who loved his family dearly. He cherished his wife, making her coffee every single morning and always finding ways to surprise her, both big and small. He made pancakes on the weekends and lasagna every other week. He was his kids’ biggest fan whether they were playing a sport or on the stage. He bungee-jumped with his sons even though he was afraid of heights and braved many amusement-park rides. He enjoyed long family walks in the neighborhood where conversations could go anywhere. He did his best to instill his love of books and learning in them all. While he loved relaxing at home with them, it also brought him great joy to treat them to family outings.
In many ways, Sig never outgrew the curious boy within. He was an avid reader and history buff. He had a deep appreciation of martial arts and eastern medicine. He believed in staying physically fit and continued with daily exercises throughout his illness. War movies and spicy Asian food were some of his favorites. He could really make you laugh when telling a story or relaying a memory. In his down time, you could find him in his favorite chair with a book in his lap and the dog near his feet. He preferred small gatherings to large ones where conversation with friends could be more intimate. When alone in the car, he had either classic rock, classical music, or NPR blaring from the speakers. If anyone else was in the car, he turned the sound off so he could listen without distraction. While not one for small talk, he would happily engage in meaningful discussions about numerous subjects, ranging from politics, history, and (of course) Iceland and family. He was truly kind and considerate and will be missed dearly.
Sig is survived by his wife of 20 years, Christine, and their two daughters, Catherine Sif and Christine Stella Sigurdsson; five children from his previous marriages – son Jon Orn Sigurdsson, daughter Luvisa Sigurdardottir and husband Haflidi Arnason, son Sigurdur S. Sigurdsson, Jr., son Jon Thor Sigurdsson, son Arni Muggur Sigurdsson; eight grandchildren – Gardar Smari Jonsson, Sindri Thor Jonsson, Kolbra Sol Jonsdottir, Omar Gisli Jonsson, Alexander Jonsson, Birna Jonsdottir, Bjorn Mani Haflidason, Dagur Freyr Haflidason; one great-grandchild – Anna Sol Sindradottir; niece Sjofn Blondal, nephew Arni Blondal, niece Edda Blondal and their children. Sig is preceded in death by his sisters, Sif Sigurdardottir and Sjofn Sigurdardottir.
Funeral services will be held in Reykjavik, Iceland in late October. The date is pending due to current travel restrictions. A Celebration of Life will be held in Dallas, Texas on November 8, 2020. Details for both will be sent out separately.
Sig bravely battled prostate cancer for two and one-half years. The family asks that you please consider a donation to the Dr. Sig Memorial Fund which will go towards prostate cancer research and early detection as well as to individuals needing assistance with medical expenses. Further details can be found here: https://portal.cftexas.org/drsig.
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