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Chis Silagy, professor of public health and foundation director of the Monash Institute of Health Services Research, died on 13 December 2001. He was 41 and had been in his current post since 1999, taking on this new challenge two years after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The news of his death was relayed rapidly around the world. Within 24 hours his self-written obituary appeared on the BMJ website. In death, as in life, Chris's particular gift was his ability to infuse his high profile public achievements with open and direct communication at a …