Physicians honour their heroes
On February 19, Vancouver’s Medical, Dental & Allied Staff Association held a very special gathering to celebrate a new VGH institution: the VGH Physician Hall of Honour.
Dr. Eric Yoshida, Head of the Division of Gastroenterology and champion of the hall, announced the inaugural inductees: six physicians whose combined expertise spans the last three centuries.
“I’ve been thinking about this for a while, says Dr. Yoshida. “This is a way to honour the many physicians and surgeons — the heroes — who saved countless lives at VGH over the past 112 years.”
The hall’s committee, made up of Dr. Yoshida; Dr. Marshall Dahl, president of the Vancouver Medical, Dental & Allied Staff Association; and Dr. Stephen Nantel, director of the VCHRI Hematology Research Program, created a shortlist and set the criteria for the inaugural six inductees.
Inductees were chosen based on merit as well as their contributions to the hospital and wider community. To be considered, candidates had to:
- have spent a significant portion of their careers at VGH
- be a physician in good standing with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC and in the community
- be retired for at least three years
And the inductees are…
After careful consideration, the committee selected the following medical trailblazers as the inaugural inductees:
- Wallace B. Chung (Vascular Surgery)
- Felix Durity (Neurosurgery)
- Sheldon Charles (Shelly) Naiman (1937-2016) (Hematology & Hematopathology)
- George Frederick (Fritz) Strong (1897-1957) (Internal Medicine)
- Robert E. McKechnie (1861-1944) (Surgery)
- Donald W. Paty (1936-2004) (Neurology)
Each inductee has made significant contributions to his respective field and has received honours such as the Order of Canada, the Order of BC or the King George V Silver Jubilee Medal.
“My mother and I were humbled that my father was included in the VGH Hall of Honour,” says Dr. Breay Paty. “Knowing that my father left a lasting legacy at VGH as well as the larger Multiple Sclerosis community is certainly gratifying. We greatly appreciate the honour that was bestowed upon him and are very grateful for this gesture by VGH and Vancouver Coastal Health.”
“It was very moving to see Dad honoured for his lifetime of work at VGH and UBCH,” says Dr. Maria Chung. “Both he and our mother have been a great inspiration to my brother and myself. Although Dad has been recognized for his work in the community with many, many other honours, this is one is very special to him and to us as a family because of our ongoing relationship with VGH and UBCH.”
The VGH Physician Hall of Honour is the first of its kind in Western Canada; it will be erected on the main floor of the Jim Pattison Pavilion later this year.
“I hope the hall will mean that people who have accomplished great things are not forgotten and that their legacy will live on,” says Dr. Yoshida. “It is my hope that colleagues, trainees and residents will be inspired to do better and that the passing of the torch will go on in perpetuity.”