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Biographical entry Saner, John Godfrey (1885 - 1923)

MRCS Oct 10th 1912; FRCS Dec 12th 1912; BA Cantab 1910; BCh 1910; MCh 1912.

31 May 1885
Southburn, Victoria Colony, Natal
General surgeon


Son of Charles Taylor Saner, planter, of Johannesburg, and Mary Blaine, was born at Southburn, Victoria Colony, Natal, May 31st, 1885. He was educated at St. Andrew's College, Grahamstown, under the Rev J Eshin DD, and the Rev S McGowan, and was admitted to Caius College, Cambridge, on Oct 1st, 1903. He was Captain of the Rugby Football Club in 1905 and was in the University team in the same year. He graduated BA after gaining a 2nd Class in Part I of the Natural Science Tripos in 1906. In 1907 he gained a University scholarship at Guy's Hospital, where his career was notable. In 1910 he won the Beaney prize in pathology, and held the usual resident appoint¬ments after qualifying. He was Demonstrator of Anatomy for six months, and from 1913-1916 was Resident Surgical Officer.

At the outbreak of the European War (1914-1918) he served for a few weeks in the Royal Navy, and at the end of 1914 was appointed to a hospital in Belgium with the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel (Belgium) and Captain RAMC. He held this post to the beginning of 1916, when his health broke down. Apparently recovering, he served for a short time in the Duchess of Sutherland's Hospital at Calais, but was released from military service as being unable to stand the strain.

In 1917 he joined Dr Rogers in practice at Johannesburg, and in 1919 was appointed Hon. Assistant Visiting Surgeon to the Johannesburg Hospital.

Saner was an enthusiast in his profession, an active member of the Witwaters¬rand Branch of the British Medical Association, and was largely instrumental in founding the Junior Clinical and Pathological Club in Johannesburg. He was an able surgeon, a loyal comrade, and a good friend. He died in May or June, 1923, survived by his widow and two sons. He practised at 19 Anstey's Buildings, Kerk Street, Johannesburg.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Biographical History of Gonville and Caius College, iv, 44].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England