Obituaries

James Roderick Johnston (“J R”) CameronMurray Newell CoxJane Mooney FullertonDavid Nathaniel JohnJeanne Gloria Mason (née Roper)Klaus Abraham MischRobert Humphreys RamsayMoritz RollJohn Alexander RossShri Om SharmaLeonard Birnie StrangDavid Henry Targett

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7108.610 (Published 06 September 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:610

James Roderick Johnston (“J R”) Cameron


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Former consultant surgeon Royal Infirmary Edinburgh (b Belfast 1902; q Edinburgh 1927; FRCSE), d 23 February 1997. He achieved his two major ambitions—to be a “chief” in his own teaching hospital and to be president of his royal college. The son of a dental surgeon, he first qualified in dentistry and after graduating in medicine spent a year in Montreal. He worked first in the pathology department of McGill University and then as resident to Wilder Penfield, the neurosurgeon. He was an honorary assistant surgeon at Leith and was appointed to the Royal Infirmary only a few months before the outbreak of war, when he volunteered for service in the Royal Army Medical Corps. He landed at Narvik in 1940, but because of a hand injury was unable to function as a surgeon. He was, however, able to ski and hence was posted as medical officer to the famous French regiment, the Chasseurs Alpin—“Les Diables Bleu.” Later he served in the Middle East and Italy, where he had command of the surgical divisions of two forward base hospitals. After the war he took a special interest in thyroid surgery and skin tumours, and also became involved in the affairs of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, being elected president in 1967, the year he retired. He played an important part in revising the college bylaws, unchanged since 1505, and was also active in promoting intercollegiate cooperation world wide. His other lasting memorial was his inauguration of the Sir James Young Simpson lectureship. He was proud of his Highland antecedents, and spent most of his holidays in his clan's ancestral country close to Achnacarry, while he was president of the Edinburgh branch of the Clan Cameron Association in the 1950s. Predeceased by his wife, Dorothy, he leaves two sons and …

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