David Richard Thomas

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 20 February 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g1234
  1. Ken Callum

David Richard Thomas descended from four generations of Welsh coalminers. His father left Wales in the depression to look for work. This he found in Watford, where he met and married David’s mother. Although the young family struggled financially, David passed his scholarship to Watford Grammar School, and was subsequently awarded a scholarship to St George’s Hospital, then at Hyde Park Corner. He thoroughly enjoyed his time at St George’s. There were many stories to tell of his exploits, and the behaviour of some of the more eccentric consultants.

He did medical, surgical, and obstetric house jobs at St George’s Hospital. He then joined Union Castle Line as a ship’s surgeon and, again, had many entertaining stories to tell. After three trips, worried he might develop an alcohol problem, he returned to England and became an assistant in general practice. Surprisingly he found time to study for the primary fellowship exams for the Royal College of Surgeons, which he passed first time. He then got the job of casualty registrar at St Thomas’ Hospital where he met Jo, a night sister, who subsequently became his first wife. They eventually moved to Leamington Spa, where he was a surgical registrar, …

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