Lives of the fellows

John Vivian Gordon

b.14 June 1919 d.29 November 2008
MB BS Adelade(1942) MRACP(1947) MD(1949) MRCP(1950) FRACP(1958) FRCP(1974)

John Gordon, neurologist, was born in Adelaide, the first child of Kenneth Gordon, a clerk, and his wife, Catherine. John’s first wife, Margaret (née Watson), died in 1988 and his second wife, Margaret (nee Matthews), survives him. He had two sons: John, a lawyer, and Jeremy, an artist, and many grandchildren.

He was a handsome, stocky man with a full head of hair. He had a progressive gait disorder, the nature of which was never definitely ascertained despite consultation with many Australian and British neurologists. He finally developed prostate cancer and died in Adelaide after a prolonged illness.

He was educated at St Peter’s College, the University of Adelaide, the University of London, Guy’s Hospital and the Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, Queen Square. He served in Borneo in the Australian Imperial Forces during the Second World War.

He had a private practice on North Terrace, Adelaide and trained numerous physicians and a number of neurologists. He was a Foundation Member of the Australian Association of Neurologists.

His appointments included senior neurologist at Royal Adelaide and Repatriation general hospitals from 1954 until his retirement in 1977 and also senior neurologist, Adelaide Children’s Hospital. He was also a clinical teacher in the faculty of medicine at the University of Adelaide.

Art and music were fundamental to John. He was an accomplished pianist and in particular loved the music of JS Bach. He travelled widely and had an enduring fascination for ancient Egypt. Later his study of hieroglyphics and ancient texts became a consuming passion.

R Burns

[Reproduced, with permission, from the Royal Australasian College of Physicians’ College Roll]

(Volume XII, page web)

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