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Biographical entry Stewart, Sir Hector Hamilton (1901 - 1979)

KBE 1977; MRCS and FRCS 1931; MB BS Melbourne 1920; MD 1929; FRACS 1933.

4 November 1901
3 November 1979
General surgeon


Hector Hamilton Stewart was born on 4 November 1901. His father, Hector Joseph Stewart, was a civil and mining engineer, also a pastoralist and a member of the Legislative Council of Western Australia. After attending Perth Modern School and the University of Western Australia as a state exhibitioner he studied medicine at the University of Melbourne. After posts at the Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, he came to England in 1930 and worked at the Royal National Orthopaedic and Woolwich War Memorial Hospitals, becoming FRCS in 1931. He returned to Perth to be superintendent of the Royal Perth Hospital, and honorary surgeon from 1935 to 1961. He was also deputy chairman of the Board of Management, and later of the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. He was a member of the Senate, University of Western Australia, from 1963 and Pro-Chancellor 1971-72. He was also a member of Council and then President of the BMA (Western Australia). Between 1957 and 1968 he was a member of Council, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. For forty years, 1932-72, he was Justice of the Peace for Western Australia. From 1940 to 1945 he served as Lieutenant-Colonel with the Australian Army Medical Corps.

In 1935 he married Winifred Wheatley Viotti and they had a daughter and three sons, the eldest, Ian Hector, becoming FRCS in 1969. He was a family man, very kind and a fine surgeon. Unfortunately, when he was appointed KBE in 1977 he was unfit to travel to Britain and was therefore knighted by the Queen's Representative in Australia. He died on the day before his 78th birthday, 3 November 1979.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Brit med J 1980, 1, 873; Med J Aust 1980, 1, 132].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England