Lives of the fellows

David Robert Wigston Haddock

b.? d.10 June 1985
MD Liverp(1950) MB ChB(1952) MRCP(1954) DTM&H(1959) FRCP(1972)

David Haddock was born in Southport and graduated from Liverpool University. He had an outstanding undergraduate career, gaining distinctions in physics, chemistry and pharmacology, medals in pathology and surgery, and prizes in pharmacology and obstetrics. He also won the Milne medal for tropical medicine. After completing his postgraduate training in various Liverpool hospitals he joined Her Majesty’s Overseas Colonial Service in 1956, at first as a special grade medical officer, being promoted later to specialist and consultant physician. He spent nine years in Tanzania where he gained a reputation for being a shrewd physician who would champion his patient’s cause in a manner that earned the gratitude of many from all walks of life.

In 1965 he returned to England and joined the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine as a senior lecturer (Technical Assistance) and in 1966 he was seconded to the Ghana Medical School where he spent six very happy and productive years, helping to educate a generation of Ghanian doctors who at all times held him in the highest esteem. He was appointed professor of medicine and head of the department of medicine at the University of Benin, Nigeria, in 1973, where he was responsible for the clinical training of the first medical students ever to graduate from that university. After a short spell back in Liverpool he was offered the chair of medicine at King Abdul Aziz University, Jeddah, where once again his dedication, sympathy, clinical skills and teaching ability endeared him to both students and colleagues.

His marriage was a very happy one and throughout his many years overseas his wife, May, gave him loyal and valiant support. They had two sons, Keith and Clive.

David’s clinical interests were wide, but one of his special subjects was tropical neurology, on which he wrote several excellent papers which gained him an international reputation as an acknowledged expert. In 1980 he returned to Liverpool, taking an active part in the clinical and teaching activities at the School. He was always a glutton for work and undertook extra medical duties at Whiston Hospital, and towards the end of his life acted as consultant in tropical medicine at Monsall Hospital in Manchester, where he earned the respect and affection of his colleagues, as he also did at the School.

He had several interests outside medicine and was a keen and talented photographer.

David’s loyalty was exemplary; his readiness to help at all times, no matter how inconvenient, became almost legendary. His quiet and unassuming personality masked a very strong character, which became evident during his short and painful terminal illness. He knew that he had malignant disease but accepted it with fortitude, concerned about some literary commitments which he felt he was not going to be able to meet. This was typical of him. His last days were made easier by his wife’s devotion and skilled nursing.

HMJ Gilles
Sir Gordon Wolstenholme

[Lancet, 1985,2,226; Liverpool Echo, 7 Mar 1969]

(Volume VIII, page 201)

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