"President Nelson, you have touched the hearts and the souls — literally touched the hearts — and the souls and minds of millions of people," University of Utah President Ruth V. Watkins said. "We're so delighted to be able to establish this tribute to you and Dantzel."
The University of Utah School of Medicine announced a new endowed chair on Friday night that will be a lasting tribute to LDS Church President Russell M. Nelson and his late first wife for their pioneering contributions to heart surgery and research.
University President Ruth V. Watkins called the Russell M. Nelson and Dantzel W. Nelson Presidential Endowed Chair in Cardiothoracic Surgery a "spectacular opportunity to recognize excellence," according to a news release.
The late Sister Nelson directly contributed to the development of the first practical-use heart-lung machine that allowed her husband and others to pioneer open-heart surgery in the 1950s. She also provided critical encouragement to President Nelson in those early days when losses left him grief-stricken.