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Biographical entry McCormack, Michael Patrick (1916 - 1994)

FRCS ad eundem 1974; MB ChB Edinburgh 1939; FRCS Edinburgh 1947.

4 May 1916
Johannesburg, South Africa
24 March 1994
Orthopaedic surgeon


Born in Johannesburg on 4 May 1916, Michael McCormack was the son of an Irish immigrant who became general manager of the Union Corporation. He was educated at Haileybury and went to the University of Edinburgh to study medicine, qualifying in 1939. After training posts in Edinburgh and Glasgow he served in the RAMC from 1941 to 1946 in India, Burma and Sumatra. On his return he studied at the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre, Oxford, and there married Janet, née Bradley, in 1950. They had two sons and two daughters.

He was appointed as consultant orthopaedic surgeon at Bristol Royal Infirmary and the Winford Orthopaedic Hospital in 1950. An outstanding administrator, he also developed a considerable medicolegal practice, but his main achievement was to raise funds to endow a Chair in Orthopaedics in Bristol. He had a considerable influence on the teaching and training of younger orthopaedic surgeons. Bristol's contribution to the British Orthopaedic Association was organised by him and they held national meetings in the city in 1965 and 1973.

He had captained the first eight in rifle shooting at Haileybury, and continued to shoot for their 'veterans' at Bisley. He also enjoyed music and sailing and travelled extensively, mainly in India. He died of cancer of the prostate on 24 March 1994, survived by his wife and family, of whom it was said that 'none of his four children took up medicine as they believed that [their father] had worked too hard'.

Sources used to compile this entry: [BMJ 1994 309 801, with portrait; The Times 30 June 1994].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England