Lives of the fellows

George Frederick Strong

b.22 February 1897 d.26 February 1957
BSc Minn(1918) MD Minn(1921) DSc Br Col(1954) Hon LLD Toronto(1956) Hon DSc Quebec(1956) FACP(1937) FRCP(C)(1948) *FRCP(1955) Hon FRACP(1956)

George Strong—Fritz to his friends—was born in St. Paul, Minnesota; his father was Charles Douglas Strong, a business executive, his mother Sophia, the daughter of John Haupt. Between 1921 and 1923 he did post-graduate work at the University Hospital, Minneapolis, the Harvard Medical School, the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital and the Vancouver General Hospital. In 1922 he went back to Peter Bent Brigham Hospital as graduate assistant and fellow of the National Research Council, but returned to practise in Vancouver in 1924.

A man of forceful personality and driving power, he had not long been on the staff of the Vancouver General Hospital, which he joined in 1926, before he became the leading specialist in Western Canada in his chosen field of cardiology. His phenomenal capacity for work is shown in his many presidencies, which included those of the Vancouver Medical Association, 1929-30, the British Columbia Medical Association, 1936-7, the Canadian Medical Association, 1954-5, and the American College of Physicians, 1955-6.

He was the leading influence in the founding of the faculty of medicine at the University of British Columbia, of which he was the first professor of clinical medicine in 1951, and in the establishment of the British Columbia Cancer Institute, the Western Society of Rehabilitation (later the G. F. Strong Rehabilitation Centre), and the British Columbia Medical Research Institute (later the G. F. Strong Research Laboratory). He contributed numerous articles, particularly on cardiology, to American and Canadian medical journals. He died suddenly in the railway station in Montreal, where he had gone to preside at a meeting of the National Heart Foundation of Canada.

In 1919 he married Ruth, the daughter of John Hunter Nickel, a building contractor. She and their daughter survived him; their son, George Frederick, was killed in 1942 while serving as a bomber-pilot with the Royal Canadian Air Force.

Richard R Trail

* He was elected under the special bye-law which provides for the election to the fellowship of "Persons holding a medical qualification, but not Members of the College, who have distinguished themselves in the practice of medicine, or in the pursuit of Medical or General Science or Literature..."

[Brit.med.J., 1957, 1, 767 (p); Canad. med. Ass. J., 1957, 76, 517 (p); Lancet, 1957, 1, 743 (p); Montreal Gazette, 28 Feb. 1957.]

(Volume V, page 405)

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