Obituaries

Dr. Hans W. Sollinger

August 30, 1946 - May 15, 2023

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Obituary For Dr. Hans W. Sollinger

Madison - Dr. Hans W. Sollinger passed away peacefully on May 15, 2023 with his two daughters by his side after a recurrence of a previous illness. He was born in Pasing, Munich, Germany on August 30, 1946 to Johann and Maria Sollinger. He grew up loving soccer and skiing and was a member of the German National Ski Team. In his late teens, his passion and focus shifted to medicine and science. He earned his medical degree at the Medical School of Munich in 1973 and PhD at the University of Munich in 1975. Later that year, an immunobiology research fellowship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison brought him to the US, and eventually he stayed for his surgical residency and transplantation training. During his career, Dr. Sollinger revolutionized the field of transplantation. He developed a novel kidney pancreas transplant technique that significantly improved patient outcomes. He pioneered preclinical and clinical research development of an immunosuppressant drug called CellCept, which improved thousands of lives worldwide. He worked endlessly on gene therapy techniques that could potentially one day lead to a cure for type 1 diabetes. Later in his career, he developed a deep interest in diagnostic and therapeutic interventions for Loin Pain Hematuria Syndrome. He served as the chair of organ transplantation at UW School of Medicine and president of the American Society of Transplant Surgeons. Throughout his career, he mentored countless students, residents, and fellows - many of whom eventually became lifelong colleagues and friends. He thrived on caring for patients and watching them lead healthy and longer lives.

Dr. Sollinger became an Opa with the arrival of granddaughters, Hayden in 2015 and Keira in 2017. He loved his granddaughters and enjoyed watching them grow and start to play soccer.

Dr. Sollinger is preceded in death by his father (Johann) and mother (Maria) and his dear cousin (Max). He is survived by his beloved daughters, Niki Sollinger of Arlington, VA, and Christina (Muffy) Sollinger (Matt Cummins) of El Dorado Hills, CA, and grandchildren, Hayden and Keira Cummins. He is remembered and cherished by many throughout Madison and the world who miss him as a loved one, friend, colleague, pioneer, and doctor.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to organizations special to Dr. Sollinger: The Doug Miller Education Fund at UW Hospital https://www.surgery.wisc.edu/divisions/transplantation/giving/, The Goodman Community Center, https://www.goodmancenter.org/. Restoring Hope Transplant Househttp://www.restoringhope.org/donate-now.html ,and the Madison Symphony Orchestra, https://madisonsymphony.org/makeagift/. A celebration of life will be held at a later date.

To view and sign this guestbook, please visit: www.ryanfuneralservice.com.

Ryan Funeral Home & Cremation Services

2418 N. Sherman Ave.

608-249-8257

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Condolences

  • 05/31/2023

    Sincere condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Dr. Sollinger. He touched our lives back in 2010 when he placed a kidney from my body into my 15 year old son. I thank God for the life of Dr. Sollinger. He was a wonderful man that touched so many lives. I'm sure he will be checking in on all of us from the other side.. God Bless. ūüôŹūüŹĽ Thank you Dr. Hans Sollinger.

  • 05/28/2023

    Dr. Sollinger was my kidney transplant surgeon on Feb. 4th 1988, 2 days after my 22nd birthday. He predicted my 1st baby to be a boy and at a visit in 2017 he walked me around the office proudly sharing our 29 year success story. I owe my successful 35 year transplant (still going) to this great man!

  • 05/26/2023

    I was an admin assistant in Transplant for 14 years. Dr. Sollinger was an unforgettable character. So sorry for your loss. Kathy Kennedy

  • 05/23/2023

    https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=pfbid02ohtnAfW4jPENG6kDWpdk78fQnNTHH2D6AK1ZWGw4SadxUwcYqVc3QhFXo4mQ7Axfl&id=734799345&mibextid=qC1gEa

  • 05/23/2023

    Our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones. We are very sad about his passing. Prof Sollinger has helped countless patients that were looking for support where no other doctor would research and intervene further. He had a major impact with the development of the LPHS testing protocol and its treatment of renal autotransplant. In fact, due to his advice he has saved my life - although we have never met in person. We are certain that he will be missed not only in the medical world. We are very grateful for his help. Heartfelt greetings from us. Family Gamber, Germany

  • 05/22/2023

    My deepest sympathy to Han's family and friends. He is my life "hero". An amazing man which left such a legacy. Greatly missed.

  • 05/22/2023

    My condolences, he was a doctor who truly care about his patients. He was not carried away by the big money. He speak clearly against the embolization coils and renal stents for nutcracker syndrome. A "Rara Avis" . thank you Dr. Sollinger. You will be forever missed.

  • 05/22/2023

    I remember being at his house one Christmas. He excused himself saying he would be back shortly, but he needed to see his patients for Christmas. Typical Hans, always thinking of others.

  • 05/22/2023

    Thoughts and prayers to Dr. Hans Sollinger's family. I knew him as a medical colleague as a nurse who worked with him when her rotated through the Trauma Life Support Center at UW Hospital. He will continue to be forever respected at UW Hospital and Clinics.

  • 05/22/2023

    We are sorry to hear of the passing of Dr. Sollinger, Hans, a good friend and mentor. He will be always in our mind and he will be missed. Sabine und Dietmar Abendroth

  • 05/21/2023

    My condolences to Dr. Sollinger's family and all his loved ones. Dr. Sollinger had a big heart and a contagious smile. Dr. Sollinger's contributions to the field of transplantation are legendary. He will remain a giant. He has touched the lives of so many- those of us that he trained and those that he healed. I will always remain grateful and appreciative of the opportunities he created for me and his support over the years. Your memory will live on... Antonio and Laura Di Carlo

  • 05/21/2023

    Hans was a defining person in the development of my career. He was a mentor, a role model and a dear friend. We kept in touch all these years after leaving the University of Wisconsin as recently as earlier this winter! Hans thank you for your friendship and support. My condolences to Mary, your daughters, sons in law and grandchildren. You were a titan of medicine and a Prince among men! We'll always remember you! Millie Samaniego, MD

  • 05/21/2023

    Christian sympathy to the family. Grea note in State Journal with Toy D'Alessandro proving statistics.George Kroncke, Professor emeritus CT Surgery

  • 05/21/2023

    It was the honor of my life to have worked with Dr. Sollinger. He showed what was possible then did the impossible. His always keen mind was constantly working to ensure the wellbeing of his patients. With a sense of humor he cut no corners and inspired those around him. He will be missed in every area he touched.

  • 05/21/2023

    My deepest and sincerest condolences to Mary, family and friends. I was blessed to have witnessed various celebrations between Mary and Dr. Sollinger. Your warm smiles and friendship will be in my memories forever. I miss seeing the two of you greatly. Rest In Power, Doctor.

  • 05/20/2023

  • 05/20/2023

    I mourn the passing of Hans Sollinger, a pioneer in pancreas kidney transplantation and a sympathetic, empathetic and great colleague who was a role model and friend and who I will miss. I fondly remember a walk together in Wildbad Kreuth where he showed me places of his youth and which were characterized by mutual appreciation and friendship. Since my daughter and her family live in Madison, I tried to visit him there 6 years ago, he had just left for Colorado to go skiing and also to celebrate Christmas. My thoughts are with his family and with all who miss Hans Sollinger with me. With silent greetings, Wolfgang Schareck

  • 05/19/2023

    So sorry to learn of Hans' passing. I have many fond memories from our time together at Endsulin. Jennifer Gagne and family

  • 05/19/2023

    I am very saddened on learning of the passing of Hans, with whom I spent many years talking about patients, science, diabetes - pancreas vs. islets, all, while having a good meal and some beer. He was a highly skilled surgeon who showed me how to take out and how to put in a pancreas in the middle of the night and tried to convince me to ski with him in Garmish-Paterkirchen. I did not take this challenge because , like in everything he did, Hans was just too good. My deepest sympathies to his family - he was a brilliant, skilled, and honest friend whom I will badly miss. Mark Hardy - a colleague from bygone days when we were both young and ready to conquer the world, which Hans did!

  • 05/19/2023

    Sorry to hear of Hans passing, I knew him while working at UW and he always had a smile on his face, may he rest in peace.

  • 05/19/2023

    Hans was larger than life. Wonderful mentor, surgeon, colleague, and a true transplant pioneer whose scientific curiosity and desire to improve the life of patients with organ failure could not be satiated. He gave so much of his life for his patients- and he will be forever missed.

  • 05/19/2023

    My husband is a transplant recipient from U of Chicago and patient at UW, but we met Hans on a bike ride here in Madison over a decade ago. We rode together for quite sometime and had some great laughs. I was struck by his desire to grind as hard and as fast as possible on his Cervelo with a giant smile on his face. Perhaps a metaphor for his truly unique life. He is definitely a memorable person and the transplant community thanks the entire family for sharing his gifts with us. -The Vande Velde Family

  • 05/19/2023

    Lieber Hans-Werner, ich kann es noch immer nicht fassen, dass Du nicht mehr bei uns bist. Ja, Du warst ein gro√üartiger Arzt, der mit √úberzeugung und Leidenschaft vielen, vielen Menschen geholfen und das Leben gerettet hast. Doch Du warst auch ein liebevoller und bodenst√§ndiger Familienmensch und hast Deine M√ľnchner Wurzeln nie vergessen. Wir hatten stets Kontakt gehalten und Du hast uns regelm√§√üig besucht. Ich sehe Dich noch immer, wie Du mit unseren M√§dels am Boden gekullert bist, oder sie mit 'Talkin Tom' zum Lachen gebracht hast. Du wirst uns sehr fehlen. Sag bitte allen im Himmel ganz liebe Gr√ľ√üe von uns. Vor allem meinem Papa (Max.) Wir tragen Dich immer im Herzen. Bettina mit Anke, Sophia, Nina und Tante Linda

  • 05/19/2023

    In 1989 Dr. Sollinger performed a kidney pancreas transplant on my mom. I'm forever grateful that he gave her back her life. She had more more kidney transplants and he did both of those as well. A rockstar doctor! Thank you Dr. Sollinger

  • 05/18/2023

    Rest in peace Dr.Sollinger. You gave my husband 12 more years of life. He was the 11th person to get the pancreas/kidney transplant. For the time it gave him was priceless. My deepest sympathy to his family.

  • 05/18/2023

    I am deeply sorry to the family of Dr Sollinger and sending strength & prayers for peace. He and I worked together since 2007 in the OR. In our time together, it was clear how much he loved his family, being active, and wearing ascots! He helped make me a better person and scrub nurse by challenging me every time we worked together. This world is a better place because he was part of it!

  • 05/18/2023

    Dr Sollinger, you saved my Mom's life over 25 years ago when you performed her kidney/ pancreas transplant. For that my family and I are blessed!! I also have had the honor to work with you and see your true magic. Thanks for all that you have done for the transplant community. You have left a legacy and for that we all are SO very grateful!!

  • 05/18/2023

    One of the kindest Dr's to do research in our lab. We had so much respect for him, he was an Amazing person. Who worked to make other's lives better.

  • 05/18/2023

    I am so sorry to hear the passing of Hans. He was a true scientist, friend, mentor and surgeons. His contribution to the field of solid organ transplant will not be forgotten. Our thoughts are with his family during this difficult time. Felix and family

  • 05/18/2023

    The premature loss of a friend and teacher who has contributed so much to humanity and mainly in the field of pancreas transplant surgery in the world causes us great sadness. We knew Prof. Sollinger very well and he gave us the wonderful opportunity to be with him and his family in Wisconsin living by a lake that he loved. The stay of our son Javier in his home as well as the occasions that, together with his wife, he visited us in Spain, Tenerife and Lanzarote and his bicycle excursions were unforgettable reasons to know that he is for sure a great person of incalculable human quality. WE WILL NEVER FORGET YOU AND YOU WILL ALWAYS BE IN OUR MEMORY. We give you a very strong hug. Farewell! We will miss you. Alarcó Family, Tenerife, Spain.

  • 05/18/2023

    I am so sorry to hear this. Special hugs to his kids and grandkids. My thoughts are with you at this time. Anne (Garlock) Iverson

  • 05/18/2023

    Dr. Dillinger was an amazing transplant Dr. He truly was my favorite dr he always listened to his patients and cared about their feeling. My heart is sad. I send my condolences to the family. Patient, Latisha McDuffy

  • 05/18/2023

    I am so sorry to hear the passing of Hans. There are no words to express my feelings. He was a great surgeon, scientist, and human. It was a great pleasure for me to have the opportunity to know him and work with him. I am grateful to have memories and spending good times with him. I will never forget his great unforgettable support during my journey. I know that he had a lot of impact on many people's lives. Rest in peace, Hans. You will be forever with us for your impact on people's lives, transplant, and science world.

  • 05/18/2023

    For me, Hans is one of the most important people that have passed through my life. He welcomed me into his home like a son and that is never forgotten. thank you hans for being part of my life.

  • 05/18/2023

    Dr. Sollinger was the chair of transplant when I began working with the team. He taught me so much, and remembering that I'm a visual learner, he drew the pancreas and told me how it worked. It was my honor to work with him, and write for him, although I think he thought it was quite fun to alter things to fit in one of his great stories or funny jokes. "Schultzie won't mind." We shared some good laughs and enjoyed discussing all things German. It was my great honor to be a member of his team, and more importantly, his transplant family. My husband and I share our deepest condolences to his family.

  • 05/18/2023

    To dear Muffy, her family, and Nicki; we extend sincere sympathy over your great loss, and for the world that lost a champion scientist and humanitarian. We send our love to all, Dan and Diane Kaschak

  • 05/17/2023

    God Bless you Dr. You gave us 29 extra years with our father, Dr. Grant. He passed 2 years ago. You have touched so, so many lives. Truly, a life saver. May you rest in peace. Michael Grant

  • 05/17/2023

    Hans, I just want to say, because of your conviction, your unselfish attitude and your love of life, I have survived over 34 years with my kidney/pancreas transplant. I feel wonderful because you chose the career you did. I pray you were welcomed into heaven with open arms. Thank you, Joe

  • 05/17/2023

    So sorry to hear of Hans passing. He was a wonderful physician, researcher, colleague and entrepreneur. He had energy and enthusiasm that was infectious. He has positively impacted the world and will be missed. Lynn Fallon

  • 05/17/2023

    I will always remember his hospitality and all he taught me in my rotation in 2009 in UWHC. Great physician and human being. Rest in peace, Hans. Alejandro Morales MD. PhD. Santa Cruz de Tenerife. Spain.

  • 05/17/2023

    I owe Dr. Sollinger my life. I am over 5.5 years pain free from LPHS because of him. He fought so hard for me and others to give us our lives back and I will forever be grateful to him. He has changed many, many lives and for the better. He kept in touch with me over the years and I always enjoyed my conversations with him. The world lost an amazing, gifted soul. I am thinking of his family. He will forever be in my heart.

  • 05/17/2023

    I owe Dr. Sollinger my life. I am over 5.5 years pain free from LPHS because of him. He fought so hard for me and others to give us our lives back and I will forever be grateful to him. He has changed many, many lives and for the better. He kept in touch with me over the years and I always enjoyed my conversations with him. The world lost an amazing, gifted soul. Sending many prayers and thinking of his family. He will forever be in my heart.

  • 05/17/2023

    THE best surgeon with such a sweet soul. He will always have a special place in my heart. Praying for Mary and his family!

  • 05/17/2023

    He saved my graddaughter's life when he performed her kidney auto-transplant 5 years ago. We will be forever grateful.

  • 05/17/2023

    Rest in peace Dr. Salinger. Your work and dedication has not gone unnoticed and will forever be remembered!

  • 05/17/2023

    May you find eternal paradise. Dr. Sollinger was the surgeon who transplanted my son when he was just shy of two years of age. He's sixteen now, and still has that kidney. You have had an everlasting impact on our lives and so many many others. Thank you. Many condolences to his family.

  • 05/17/2023

    Niki and Muffy, So sorry to hear this news. He was one-of-a-kind! He left a mark (sometimes literally) on everyone he touched. He was known for so many impressive feats. Least known was his long tenure as the Chairman of the Sherman Avenue Committee AKA "The SAC". He served with great distinction. He also served appetizers and whisky. We/it won't be the same without him. Carry on Hans!

  • 05/17/2023

    Rest in Paradise, Dr. Sollinger. My family and I are forever grateful for you and your incredible gift. Praying for peace and comfort to his family.

  • 05/17/2023

    Dr S saved my life. He is a legend and a truly amazing person. I hope he is peaceful and happy in heaven and I will forever be grateful and I know the entire NCS/LPHS community will be thinking of you.

  • 05/17/2023

    So sorry to hear about the untimely passing of Dr. Hans Sollinger, a true hero and pioneer in the world of Pancreas Transplant. He was formative in my career. I am truly grateful that I had the opportunity to know him. He will be deeply missed. Jonathan Fridell.

  • 05/17/2023

    I'm grateful to Dr. Sollinger for dedicating so much of his life to searching for a cure for Type 1 Diabetes. Also, he performed the kidney-pancreas transplant that has kept me alive almost three decades now. ~ Lisa Weinlader

  • 05/17/2023

    I am so sorry to hear about Hans Sollinger. He has helped many patients and medical professionals. He will be missed. Sundaram Hariharan

  • 05/17/2023

    RIP. I am alive today because of the wonderful work you did. Thank you

  • 05/17/2023

    Today, on the 5 year anniversary of getting my life back, I learned that my hero passed. I am so incredibly shocked and saddened. Dr. Sollinger was a true medical hero. He cared for his patients above and beyond what you can imagine, even being willing to do what was right for the patient knowing he may get his hand slapped by the System. I will be forever grateful to the man who gave me my life back and who gave my family their mom and wife back. You will forever be in my heart, Dr. Sollinger. I love you and I thank you! Words will never be enough to express my gratitude. -Cheryl Riffe

  • 05/17/2023

    I am so sorry to hear of the passing of Dr Sollinger. It was an honor to train with him. He was a warm, gregarious man who I had the upmost respect. Kasi McCune

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what our families say

Tiffany Foster went out of her way to fulfill all my requests, talked me through problems I was facing, and tried to make me feel as comfortable as possible when I was a wreck, totally crushed, and I thank her with all of my heart for that.

James S. | July 2020

The professional manner of the staff made a difficult time a little easier.

Lynda R. | July 2020

Services provided for both parents were perfect, on time, and no issues. Brenda is awesome and strong!

Michael M. | July 2020

Skyler was absolutely amazing. She was so caring and helpful through this whole process. She even went above and beyond to meet with us in DeForest and even to make a stop at our home to drop off or pick up anything needed. While it was a small gesture, it was so helpful and greatly appreciated.

Brooke S. | Dec. 2020

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