Wednesday, March 03, 2010

In Memory: Norman Bethune, M.D.

Today is Wednesday, 3 March 2010.

Norman Bethune, M.D., was born on this date in 1890 at Gravenhurst, Canada. After being wounded as a volunteer stretcher-bearer in the Great War, he received his medical degree in 1916. In 1936, he became head of the Canadian Medical Unit, a volunteer formation attached to the army of the Spanish Republic, the anti-fascists in the Spanish Civil War.

During that time, Bethune created the first modern mobile medical unit, capable of giving blood transfusions on the battlefield. This was the model for the Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) units. His work is directly responsible for the saving of millions of lives. In 1938, Bethune went to China to become Medical Advisor to one of the Communist Chinese armies battling the fascist Kuomintang and the invading Japanese. On 12 November 1939, he died of blood poisoning, resulting from a cut he received while operating.

The Museum of the Bourgeois is privileged to honour Dr. Bethune for his great humanitarian works and legacy.

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Blogger lawguy said...

As soon as I saw the name I knew I recognized it. However, really from the Donald Southerland movie (although I've read that there are two movies).

Quite a guy (the doctor I mean).

11:10 AM  

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