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Harvey Cushing : Resolutions and Appreciations

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Abstract

HARVEY CUSHING (1869-1939) HARVEY CUSHING RESOLUTIONS AND APPRECIATIONS In referring to the death of Dr. Cushing, Mr. Seymour remarked: "Yale has lost its most distinguished citizen, humanity one of its greatest benefactors." We of the School of Medicine feel this loss most keenly and intimately. To the students in the School he gave the inspiration of a great example; he was always ready to help them, willing at a moment's notice to interrupt anyone- even deans and elder statesmen-for a student who sought his counsel. This, indeed, was characteristic of him throughout his life, and there was only one person who mattered more to him than a student-that was a patient. Nearly every appreciation that has appeared since his death, especially those from his former pupils abroad, has mentioned that Dr. Cushing was first of all a great physician who gave primary consideration to the wel- fare of his patients. Recent students at Yale knew very little of him as a clinical teacher, for his lectures and clinics here were few, but those who had personal contact with him will not forget the experience. Nor will a Philadelphia medical student who, although he was unknown to Dr. Cushing, received, under the date of 27 December, 1938, the following letter in reply to an enquiry about Osler: Dear Mr. Thanks for your letter, which happens to be undated. You have doubt- less become so imbued with the spirit of Osler that such trifles as dating letters and bothering about a correct address are unnecessary. 'Any tomcat fool [one of his customary expressions] can tell the date by looking at the postmark, and fussiness about the exact address indicates that the person written to is unknown to the postman on his beat.' Until Osler's books were catalogued by W. W. Francis and finally sent to McGill, the urn containing his ashes was long concealed in Christ Church Cathedral near the tombs of Robert Burton and Saint Frideswide. They are now in the Osler Library at McGill; and in view of your sentimental feeling for

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