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Biographical entry Moss, John (1922 - 1997)

MRCS and FRCS 1974; MB ChB Birmingham 1946; DO 1953; FRCOphth 1989.

14 April 1997
Ophthalmologist and Opthalmic surgeon


John Moss was a former ophthalmic surgeon at Stoke Mandeville. He was born in Birmingham in 1922 and attended Bishop Vesey School, Sutton Coldfield. At Birmingham University Medical School during the war, he was of the generation of students who regularly did fireguard duties and worked as house surgeons before qualifying. He established an early interest in 'eyes', before qualifying MB ChB in 1946.

After National Service as a Captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps in Germany, he returned to the Birmingham Midland Eye Hospital, passing his diploma in ophthalmology in 1953. With rotations, he became a senior registrar; in 1958 he was appointed consultant ophthalmologist at the Royal Buckinghamshire Hospital in Aylesbury. After amalgamation, he moved to Stoke Mandeville Hospital as ophthalmic consultant, where he worked until his retirement. He was one of the first surgeons in the UK to perform a kerato-odonto-prosthesis. He passed his FRCS in 1974 and was a founder Fellow of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists in 1989.

He had a gift for languages. At an early age he had learnt to speak fluent Welsh and became a member of the Aylesbury Welsh Society, and before attending an ophthalmological congress in China he learnt Mandarin Chinese. He was interested in the history of the Netherlands and was a keen student of the Dutch language. He was a keen canoeist and a regular squash player until his late sixties. He espoused the medicinal benefits of gin, especially when combined with sweet and dry vermouth.

He is survived by his wife Barbara, sons Philip and John, four grandchildren, two elderly Citroens, a large collection of books on languages, astronomy and science fiction, and a rather miserable and confused cat called Hilda. He died from acute leukaemia on 14 April 1997 at Stoke Mandeville Hospital.

Sources used to compile this entry: [The Bucks Herald 23 April 1997, with portrait; BMJ 1997 314 1910].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England