332nd Fighter Interceptor Squadrant
Maguire AFB, New Jersey
I was born in the small South Florida community of South Miami (population 300; twenty-two miles from downtown Miami). I grew up enjoying the sparsely settled South Dade area with sunny beaches and camping out along Snapper Creek.
My father was in the automobile repair business, and I remember working with him in the shop. Tearing down and rebuilding engines always brought a distinct feeling of satisfaction, especially when the engine turned over with the starter and began to run smoothly with all of its new parts. I was engendered with a sense of mechanics that provided a degree of adeptness, making things easier for me in school, as a pilot, and especially as an orthopedic surgeon for many years.
As a young teenager, I ventured into a walk in the Christian faith that has endured to this date. Bible study became an integral part of my life as did Sunday school teaching enjoyed even up to this point in my later years. I attended public schools in the local area and upon graduating from Ponce de Leon High School in 1949, matriculated at Georgia Tech in the School of Aeronautical Engineering where I attended for two quarters.
It was during those years, traveling around the globe once each year and making many side trips to other countries of interest that Moena and I experienced a wide variety of cultures and religions. It was in those experiences that we developed a world view never before imagined. In it all, there was never the consideration to walk away from the pillars of our faith.
After returning to the States and before retiring, we went on many medical mission trips to The Ukraine, Brazil, and Africa. It was at Kijabe Station, about seventy kilometers north of Nairobi, Kenya, sitting on the edge of the Rift Valley that we experienced the greatest cultural differences between indigenous tribes and modern medicine.
I have come to believe that people of all cultures need understanding and acceptance more than they need change.
For the past four years after my retirement from medicine, I have been working on creating writing skills. My initial ventures were acute learning experiences. I am the first to admit that I have much more to learn.
Program presentations can be arranged via e-mail at email@example.com
The Korean War tugged at my desire to be a fighter pilot. I completed my two years of study at the University of Miami which was required to qualify for cadet training in the USAF. After earning my wings, I spent three years in the Air Defense Command flying F86D's at Maguire AFB in New Jersey. I was never engaged in combat but was "scrambled" on many occasions when Russian "bears" penetrated our Air Defense Identification Zone. I was often far out from our upper East Coast over the Atlantic when the "unknown" would turn back before being intercepted. I loved to fly. It was not easy to leave.
My wife, Moena and two small children left with me to return to the University of Miami and complete two years of premed education in one year and two summer sessions before beginning medical school. In the third year, we were blessed with our third child. Moena and I worked at part-time jobs, used my G.I. bill, and borrowed enough to finish medical school and move to Orlando, Florida for our new home.
Internship for one year, four years in orthopedic residency, and a six months fellowship in surgery of the hand completed my post-graduate medical education.
Looking back, I don’t know where all the years went. Moena and I spent five memorable years in the middle of my medical career in Saudi Arabia while our children labored through college years 1980-85.
Kijabe Station Hospital