It’s a cerebral embolism that’s reportedly confined former Fiat Chrysler Automobiles CEO Sergio Marchionne to a hospital bed in Zürich, Switzerland, Automotive News Europe reports, citing an article from Italian news outlet Lettera43. The former chief executive was hastily replaced in his professional role over the weekend by Mike Manley – FCA’s former head of the Jeep and Ram brands – after medical complications arose following a surgical procedure.
Marchionne hasn’t been seen publicly for several weeks, since he made an appearance in Rome on June 26th to deliver a Jeep to the Carabinieri – an Italian military police force.
According to Lettera43‘s sources, shortly after that appearance, Marchionne went in for surgery on his right shoulder to remove an invasive sarcoma with which he’d been diagnosed “long ago.” Reportedly, it was during the operation that Sergio Marchionne suffered a cerebral embolism – a medical incident in which a clot or clump of fatty plaque dislodges in a person’s bloodstream, traveling up to the brain and blocking blood flow, resulting in a type of stroke.
The embolism put Marchionne, 66, into a coma, causing irreversible brain damage and necessitating the use of a ventilator to keep him alive. Doctors have reportedly said that there’s no hope of the executive making a recovery.
Sergio Marchionne was set to retire from his position as Chief Executive Officer of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles next year, after serving in the role at Fiat Auto for 14 years, and at Chrysler for nine. The executive is credited with helping affect a definitive turnaround at Chrysler following the company’s 2009 bankruptcy, and for seeing in the American automaker an opportunity for Fiat Group while few others saw it as anything more than a doomed liability.