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Biographical entry Hislop, John Charles ( - 1976)

MRCS and FRCS 1938; MB ChB Edinburgh 1932; FRACS 1956.

17 April 1976
General surgeon


John Charles Hislop, son of a well-known Wellington surgeon, was born in Wellington, educated at Christ's College and Edinburgh University. He graduated MB ChB in 1932 and proceeded to take his FRCS in 1938. He had an unusually wide training as a house surgeon, registrar and resident surgeon and this training, together with his experience as a surgeon specialist in the RAMC in the United Kingdom, was reflected in the quality of his work later.

He joined the Army at the outbreak of the war and subsequently served in the 14th Army and the 50th Parachute Brigade in particular. He was involved in the notorious siege of Imphal and the 'bloody battle of Sangshak' as the historians describe it. Here he showed the same courage and cheerfulness in impossible conditions which were to mark his terminal illness. He was to become OC of a surgical division and was ultimately demobilised with the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel. On his discharge he returned to New Zealand and after a brief stay in Wellington, joined the Palmerston North Hospital staff in 1949 as visiting surgeon and served in this respect until 1970. He was elected FRACS in 1956. On his retirement from surgery in 1970, he took up the position of deputy medical superintendent until he finally retired late in 1975.

He made many contributions to the medical affairs of the hospital in his capacity of executive member, secretary, and then chairman of the combined medical staff. In the wider medical field he served as an executive member of the Manawatu Division of MANZ and as divisional surgeon with the St John Ambulance Brigade. Modest about his work almost to the point of diffidence, John made a contribution in the field of surgery, and later in administration which will endure in the grateful hearts of countless patients and medical and nursing colleagues. He was a most able surgeon, a wise counsellor to the younger members of his profession and a trusted and respected friend of his contemporaries. 'Uncle John', as they knew him in his hospital, will be remembered affectionately by a long line of residents and nurses for his sound clinical advice, his courtly manner and his sense of humour.

He married June Luckie of Wellington at the end of the war and had three daughters and two sons. He died on 17 April 1976.

Sources used to compile this entry: [NZ med J 1976, 84, 29].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England Library