St. Augustine surgeon dies in single-vehicle crash in Elkton

Patients, co-workers say Dr. Warren Kluger worked tirelessly

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The former chief of surgery at Flagler Hospital was killed Monday night when his SUV overturned in St. Johns County.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Sydney Warren Kluger, 71, was driving south on State Road 207 at Scoville Road near Elkton about 10:30 p.m. when he lost control of his 2003 Lexus. The SUV veered right in the curve and overturned, landing in a water-filled ditch.

Rescuers said Kluger was thrown from the vehicle and was found in the road. He died at the scene.

Kluger remained in private practice and continued to perform surgery at Flagler Hospital. Co-workers and patients said he was more than their doctor, he was a good man.

Dr. Anthony Mussalem said he never saw Kluger angry and that he worked tirelessly for his patients.

"We sat with him this past Tuesday night at the county medical meeting," Mussalem said. "He undoubtedly was still working hard and full time. It is a huge loss for the community."

"It is with heavy hearts we share with you the passing of Dr. Warren Kluger," Flagler Hospital wrote in a letter to staff Tuesday morning. "Dr. Kluger was a respected and dedicated surgeon, a part of the Flagler Hospital medical staff for almost 40 years and most recently served as chief of surgery. He was also an active member of First Coast Health Alliance. Dr. Kluger was known for spending countless hours at the hospital and was loved by his patients and colleagues. Our thoughts and prayers remain with Dr. Kluger’s wife, children and all those closest to him during this difficult time."

News4Jax interviewed Kluger in 2003 about the rising cost of malpractice insurance and he was in the news again in 2010 after his Marsh Creek home was struck by lightning and destroyed by fire. 

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