David MendelBMJ 2007; 334 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39231.710741.BE (Published 07 June 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:1228
- David Thompson
Tall and of distinguished appearance, David Mendel was at first sight a typical London teaching hospital cardiologist of his time. He was indeed an excellent cardiologist and good teacher, but the breadth of his interests and diversity of talents, together with a great gift for humour, made him a little different.
David was born in London in 1922. On leaving school he had no clear career plans, and surprisingly was not entirely confident of his abilities. He enlisted in the wartime army but was invalided out after a serious injury. There followed an unsatisfactory period in the family business, for which he had little appetite, and by his own admission no great aptitude. Almost on impulse he presented himself to Barts enquiring how he might become a medical student and to his great surprise and enduring gratitude was accepted, qualifying in 1948. His early career was interrupted by tuberculosis, requiring six months bed rest, after which he persuaded his father to subsidise the purchase of a small car and a …