Mary Hamill

BMJ 2016; 354 doi: (Published 30 August 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;354:i4633
  1. Geraldine Markey

Mary Hamill was one of four children, and the only daughter, of Hugh and Mary (O’Donnell) Keegan. Second in the family, she was devoted to her older brother, Jim, and he to her. His death at the age of 7 in a hit and run accident had a profound effect. This, coupled with her prolonged isolation in a children’s fever hospital, transformed not only her childhood but led to the passionate understanding of and empathy with childhood trauma, which so characterised Mary’s professional career. Her early education took place at Pembroke School, the legendary Miss Meredith’s in Ballsbridge, where she was very happy and thrived in its liberal atmosphere. She was later a boarder at Cabra Dominican College. She completed her leaving certificate examination there in 1955 and was accepted into University College, Dublin, to study medicine. Enrolment had to be deferred for a year because of her young age. She spent that year at Kevin Street College.

Mary started at UCD in the autumn of 1956 and soon became popular with all her classmates. She thoroughly enjoyed her years at the …

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