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Biographical entry Parker, Geoffrey Edward (1902 - 1973)

DSO 1945; Croix de Guerre with Palm and Gold Star 1945; Légion d'Honneur 1945; MRCS 1926; FRCS 1928; BA Cambridge 1924; MB BCh Cambridge 1926; MD 1945; LRCP 1926.

24 June 1902
5 December 1973
General surgeon and Urological surgeon


Geoffrey Edward Parker was born on 24 June 1902 and was educated at Windlesham House School, Hove, Marlborough College, and Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He came to St Thomas's Hospital for his clinical course and qualified with the Conjoint Diploma and the Cambridge MB in 1926. Two years later he took the FRCS. After holding junior posts at St Thomas's, the West London Hospital, and the National Temperance Hospital he ultimately became consultant surgeon to the French Hospital, the Italian Hospital and the Woolwich Group. He was specially interested in urology.

During all this time his career closely resembled that of many a London surgeon, but it was in the latter part of the second world war that he distinguished himself to a unique degree. He served with the RAMC from 1942 in North Africa and Italy, but also acquired special experience in parachute jumping, unarmed combat and the use of small arms. Early in 1944 he was parachuted into France in the Jura mountains and worked as a surgeon with the Maquis, caring for the resistance fighters with supreme courage which was rewarded by the DSO in 1945, and also by the Croix de Guerre with Palm and Gold Star, and he was made Commandeur de la Légion d'Honneur. Later he received honours also from Belgium and Italy. His experiences were described in his books The black scalpel 1968 and Surgical cosmopolis 1970.

At Cambridge Parker was awarded a blue for boxing, and he also played squash and golf. In later life he did a good deal of writing and painting, his pictures having appeared in exhibitions in England, France and America.

In 1930 he married Kathleen Hewlett Johnson and had two sons and a daughter. This marriage was dissolved and in 1967 he married Margaret Lois Wilsdon who survived him. Parker died on 5 December 1973 at the age of 71.

Sources used to compile this entry: [The Times 8 December 1973;Brit med J 1974, 1, 80].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England