winter 2013

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In Memoriam


Dr. Brian John Sturmey Harley

The Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association is saddened by the passing of former NLMA President Dr. Brian John Sturmey Harley. He passed away peacefully on August 22, 2013 in St. John's, NL at the age of 89.

Dr. Brian John Sturmey Harley, FRCP, FRCPC, CD, a retired internal medicine specialist, passed in St. John’s on Thursday, August 22, 2013. Dr. Harley was born in 1924 and educated in England at Mill Hill School and St. Mary’s Hospital Medical School in London. While there, Dr. Harley joined the Home Guard, a defense organization of the British Army. He had already served in the Officers’ Training Corps as a youth. The Home Guard was disbanded in 1944 following the invasion of Normandy, and Dr. Harley served in the base hospitals as a medical student.

He migrated to Canada in 1955 and, after a residency in Ottawa, he moved his young family to Corner Brook, where he practiced general internal medicine. During subsequent years he developed a Medical Consultant Group that provided service for the west coast of Newfoundland and took further training to enable Western Memorial Regional Hospital to open a Nuclear Medicine Department. He was active in the militia and as Lieutenant Colonel, he commanded the 1st Medical Company R.C.A.M.C. from 1970 until its disbandment. Dr. Harley was also active in medical politics having been elected as President of the Newfoundland Medical Association in 1973. In later years, he was awarded the Honorary Life Membership Award from both the NLMA (1992) and Canadian Medical Association (1999).

He joined the Corner Brook Rotary Club in 1962, serving as a Paul Harris Fellow and Club President from 1990 to 1991. He was awarded the True Rotarian Award in 2008 in recognition of devoted and notable service and for furthering the principles of Rotary. An enthusiastic sportsman and outdoorsman, he was a founding member of the Marble Mountain Ski Club and the Blomidon Country Club. Dr. Harley was interested in history, especially the history of the Bay of Islands and published a book on the subject in 1998 entitled, The Legacy of James Cook.

He is predeceased by his first wife Beryl (nee Coleman), second wife Hazel (nee Osmond), and son Dr. Richard (who followed in his father’s footsteps to become a radiologist). Leaving to mourn are his daughters Jacqueline, Allison (Doug) O’Keefe, Dr. Caroline (Tom) Alteen and daughter-in-law Kelly.



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