Lives of the fellows

Robert Duncan Eastham

b.8 September 1917 d.5 September 2011
MB BChir Lond(1946) MRCS LRCP(1946) DPath(1952) MD Cantab(1953) MRCPath(1964) FRCPath(1965) MRCP(1971) MRCPsych(1976) FRCP(1978) FRCPsych(1983)

Robert Duncan Eastham was a consultant pathologist in Bristol. Born in Tamworth-in-Arden, his father was Leonard Ernest Sydney Eastham, a professor of zoology. His late aunt, Marjorie Wilson, had been assistant medical officer of health for Blackpool, and his second cousin, Frederick S Jackson, was a consultant cardiologist at Newcastle General Hospital.

Educated at King Edward VII School in Sheffield, he studied medicine at Trinity College, Cambridge and University College Hospital (UCH). After qualifying in 1946, he did house jobs at UCH before commencing his National Service. He joined the RAF and worked as a pathologist with the rank of squadron leader from 1947 to 1949.

On demobilisation, he returned to UCH as a registrar and junior hospital medical officer in pathology for three years. In 1953 he moved to Newcastle upon Tyne where he was appointed a consultant pathologist at the general hospital. Following that he went to Bristol in 1957 as consultant to Frenchay Hospital and district.

Along with various scientific papers he published 4 books. With J Jancar he wrote Clinical pathology in mental retardation (Bristol, Wright, 1968). He then published A laboratory guide to clinical diagnosis 4th ed (Bristol, Wright, 1976), Clinical haematology 6th ed (Bristol, Wright, 1984) and Biochemical values in clinical medicine 7th ed (Bristol, Wright, 1985).

He loved music and played the flute in amateur recitals. A squash player in his youth, he later enjoyed swimming, travelling, gardening and reading.

In 1950 he married Joan Olive, whose father had been a farmer and a pilot in the Royal Flying Corps. They had a son called David.

RCP editor

(Volume XII, page web)

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