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» » American Experience Partners of the Heart (1988– )

Short summary

During World War II and the era of staunch racial segregation, a Black carpenter's son named Vivien Thomas, who had a talent for surgery, along with a white surgeon named Dr. Alfred Blalock, who defied the medical establishment created a partnership that changed the course of cardiac surgery. With only a high school diploma, Thomas became a leading cardiac pioneer and educator of two generations of the United States' premiere heart surgeons. This moving documentary tells the story of Thomas and his relationship with Blalock, one that ushered in advances in surgery that are still in existence today.

Episode credited cast:
Alfred Blalock Alfred Blalock - Himself (archive footage) (as Dr. Alfred Blalock)
Denton A. Cooley Denton A. Cooley - Himself (as Dr. Denton A. Cooley)
John Dryden John Dryden - Newsreel Voice (voice)
Koco Eaton Koco Eaton - Himself (as Dr. Koco Eaton)
Morgan Freeman Morgan Freeman - Himself - Narrator (voice)
Christopher Haley Christopher Haley - Dr. Vivien Thomas
J. Alex Haller Jr. J. Alex Haller Jr. - Himself (as Dr. J. Alex Haller Jr.)
Beau James Beau James - Dr. Alfred Blalock
Jane Leuders Jane Leuders - Dr. Helen Taussig
Richard Scott Richard Scott - Himself (as Dr. Richard Scott)
Rowena Spencer Rowena Spencer - Herself (as Dr. Rowena Spencer)
Helen Taussig Helen Taussig - Herself (archive footage) (as Dr. Helen Taussig)
Vivien Thomas Vivien Thomas - Himself (archive footage) (as Dr. Vivien Thomas)
Courtney B. Vance Courtney B. Vance - Dr. Vivien Thomas (voice)
Desiree Marie Velez Desiree Marie Velez - The Nurse (credit only)
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