Tribute to Dr DK Naidoo
In the name of God, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.
This tribute is written to honour and celebrate the life of this incredible human being: an icon, a visionary, a larger than life person, a mentor, a guide, a colleague and a very special friend
Dylan’s passing has created a vacuum in the dermatology community. For both the academic and private sectors, it is a huge loss. His are shoes simply too large to fill.
Dylan will always be remembered for his pursuit of excellence. This defined him as a person and in his practice of dermatology. He never settled for average; mediocrity didn’t exist in his vocabulary. However, in his striving to continuously re-define excellence, he remained selfless. He was always passionate about the growth of others and attained a kind of excellence we don’t often see; he was the reason others around him developed. The mantra that Dylan always preached was “Complacency is a disease, Satisfaction is Death, and Excellence is a moving target”
Dylan was passionate about teaching; enjoying every moment with registrars on ward rounds and in the clinic. His eye for detail and astute mind ensured our presentations were “perfect”.It was his grooming that won KZN registrar’s prizes ad nauseum at the annual dermatology congresses, often times neglecting his own talks to ensure that his registrars “shone “.
Dylan left the academic sector after at least a decade’s service and started his private practice at Parklands Hospital. Within a short space of time he had his sights on a “bigger and better” venture. This culminated in the opening of his dermatology facility at Westridge Medical Centre in 2001. He always had a greater vision and that was to set up a Skin Centre that could accommodate all dermatologists in the city. After he was well established, Kingsleigh Lodge, an Old age Home was available and Dylan saw this as an opportunity to develop a centre of excellence for the management of skin diseases as well as offering aesthetics and laser. In 2008, after extensive renovations, Dermatology Skincare and Laser Specialists opened its doors. This is a fabulous facility with 35 staff, offering patients almost any dermatological therapy under one roof. It is certainly a unique facility in South Africa and is testimony to the visionary that he was.
He tirelessly strove for excellence, spending hours digesting journals from 6.30 am and even after seeing patients in the clinic just to ensure he “had his finger on the pulse”. In honesty, the range of journals and textbooks he subscribed to surpassed those that were available in the reference library at medical school!
That was the extent he went to, to ensure that his patients could benefit from the latest and most innovative of therapies. However, in his hunger he remained selfless; always sharing and excited to impart what he had learnt. He was always proud and enthusiastic of the success of others. It never diminished his own achievements because he saw everyone as a partner not a rival.
Throughout Dylan’s journey, another quality we witnessed was Generosity; with a capital “G”. He gave of himself, his time, his knowledge and materially too. His doors at Dermatology and Skincare were open to anyone keen to learn. Registrars and consultants at medical school were encouraged to come in and improve their skills in surgery, aesthetics and mole mapping. Even dermatologists starting private practice often began their journey under his “wings” before setting out to spread their own.
Another mantra Dylan lived by was “to remember your roots” and “to plough back”. He gave selflessly and was a platinum sponsor of the refurbishment project of the skin clinic at King Edward VIII Hospital. He believed it was his duty to invest back into the institution that trained him and remained connected to his roots and always remembered his humble beginnings.
Dylan’s pursuit of excellence permeated all aspects of his life: he was quick-witted, creative, artistic, a great musician, had a passion for luxury cars and a flair for fashion- a real zest for life. He was exemplary even through his illness. He displayed amazing courage and showed us the power of the human mind. He relentlessly searched for alternate solutions, defied statistics and found answers beyond science and medicine. He used his illness to re-define himself as a holistic healer.
The Department of Dermatology at UKZN, the KZN Dermatology IPA and the South African Dermatological Society extends its sympathies to his wife Logie who has been an exceptional pillar of strength to Dylan and his son Kavi in this crucial final year of his schooling.
Dylan will always be remembered by his colleagues and thousands of his adoring patients: his spirit will live on at Skin Clinic KEH VIII and Dermatology and Skincare. As Dylan would have said “ Rock n Roll Soldier “
Finally, let us all remember and let our daily lives be guided by the fact “ To God do we belong and to him we all shall surely return “
What sadness really! My deepest condolences to his family and the patients that adored him.
He truly was larger than life and a wonderful doctor indeed.
He had an amazing way of making one feel beautiful albeit scarring, pimples etc that reeked havoc to one's confidence.
A wonderful doctor that was so approachable...
Will be missed.
RIP Dr Naidoo
Molly Pillay (Reddy)
His impact on our family's lives were so great that when I received notification of his passing it felt like a personal loss. He had a presence and calmness about him that I will always remember and strive to be as. What a great, great man! I wish his family lots of love, strength and condolences with his passing!
I first met Dr Naidoo at a Dermatology Congress in Wilderness in the late 1990’s.
He was one amazing person. Intelligent, caring, hard working and with an excellent sense of dress.
He made difference to the lives of many people.
I for one, is really saddened by his passing.
My condolences, albeit belated, to his loved ones.