Allen Richard Raczkowski, 60, of Scottsdale, passed away with his family by his side on Sunday, December 23, 2012, after a ten week battle with leukemia. He was born on February 4, 1952 to Frank and Eva (Curzydlo) Raczkowski in Wyandotte, Michigan and married his one true love Maria Lena Krasun on February 12, 1972, in Southgate, Michigan. An accomplished and gifted student, Allen graduated from medical school at Wayne State University in 1977. His surgical and cardiothoracic training was completed at the University of Wisconsin in 1984. His clinical practice, spanning nearly 30 years, was dedicated to the state of Arizona, divided between Tucson (1984-98; 2011 to present) and Phoenix (1998-2011).
Allen joined the University of Arizona Department of Surgery Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery as an assistant professor of surgery in October 2011. Recognized as one of the pioneers in robotic heart surgery, he performed nearly 400 robot-assisted heart surgeries during the course of his career and was the busiest proctor in the country for teaching others his
techniques. Allen’s passion was the use of surgical techniques to complete complex mitral valve repairs. He was one of the earliest adopters of robot-assisted heart valve surgery, with his first case in 2003. His involvement with robotics allowed him to achieve several “firsts.” He was the first in the world to perform robot-assisted aortic valve surgery and the first to use the robot to do mitral repairs on the non-arrested, beating heart. He was the first in Arizona to perform robotic mitral valve replacement and repairs, and the first to do a surgical maze procedure to treat atrial fibrillation. Allen will be missed by his loving wife Maria, his two children Mark Raczkowski (Jennifer) and Lisa Brigden (Glenn) of Phoenix, Arizona, and his two grandchildren Nathan and Layla. He is survived by his mother Eva, who was blessed to see his first and last breaths, his two brothers, Dennis (Lorraine) and Raymond, and sister Elaine Roffey (John). Allen was preceded in death by his father Frank. A Visitation will be held from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, December 27, 2012, at Whitney & Murphy Funeral Home at 4800 East Indian School Road in Phoenix, Arizona. A Funeral Mass will take place on Friday, December 28, 2012, beginning at 1:00 p.m. at St. Patrick Catholic Community Church at 10815 North 84th Street in Scottsdale, Arizona. Burial will be at St. Francis Cemetery at 2033 N. 48th St Phoenix, AZ 85008. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to The Leukemia & Lymphoma
Society, Donor Services, P.O. Box 4072, Pittsfield, Massachusetts 01202 or Be the Match National Marrow Donor Program 3001 Broadway Street N. E. Suite 100 Minneapolis, MN 55413 or www.marrow.org.