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Name: NEVILL, Gerald Edward (Dr.)

Birth Date: 22 Dec 1915 Nurney, County Carlow

Death Date: 23 Jan 2003 Limuru

Nationality: Irish

First Date: 1940

Last Date: 2003

Profession: Doctor, surgeon. President of the Irish Society in 1955

Area: Nairobi

Married: 1. Hilda Francis Lurring b. 13 Mar 1917 Navan, Meath, d. 8 Nov 2005 Newton, Montgomeryshire, Wales (later m. Francis George Holland b. 1912); 2. Mrs Mary Evelyn Furnivall née Brown

Children: Patrick A. C. (5 May 1946-11 June 2007 Maidstone); Christopher; David Gilly

Book Reference: Irish, Rundgren, Cass, Barnes

School: Dublin Univ. MCh, FRCS

General Information:

Irish - Gerald's interest in Africa stemmed from his father's friendship with Norman Jewell way back before WW1 at Trinity College. Norman, who became a surgeon had later disappeared to Africa. However, when Gerald went to Trinity in 1933 he encountered Norman's son, John, who was a few years ahead of Gerald at the university, and they struck up a friendship as John was an excellent 'fly-half' and they played rugby together. John Jewell had lots of pictures of wild animals from Africa in his study, and was full of tales of that continent so Gerald got to know a little about Kenya.
Shortly after Gerald qualified he met Dr. Gregory searching for a surgeon to replace Dr. Burkitt, who had retired. War was imminent and all qualified doctors were 'on reserve' but nevertheless Gerald applied to Dr. Gregory and, on hearing that the RAMC did not need him then for field work but might need him later on in Kenya, if the war spread, he accepted Dr. Gregory's offer.
He was found a berth on the 'Malta' which sailed for Kenya on 1st February 1940. The ship dodged magnetic mines in the channel, torpedo boats and 'U' boats in the Atlantic and arrived in Mombasa at dawn on 17th March 1940, which Gerald took as a good omen [St. Patrick's Day]. The war of course did spread and Gerald's services were indeed required as he was in the right place at the right time. After the war he returned to the practice with Drs. McCaldin and Gregory and established himself as one of Kenya's leading surgeons.
Edward Grogan of 'From Cape to Cairo' fame had given land in Muthaiga for the building of a children's hospital in memory of his late wife, Gertrude, and there was not a family in Kenya who did not bless him for this, as a children's hospital was so badly needed. However, in 1955, the hospital found itself in financial difficulties and Gerald asked me to join him in a major campaign to raise funds for Gertrude's Garden. Gerald arranged for a huge barometer to be placed over the front door of Torr's Hotel. As funds came in the red line was moved upwards towards the target. We tapped all the parents of children who had previously been treated at the hospital and ended up with a huge charity ball at Torrs. The response was good and Gerald's efforts saved the day for Gertrude's Garden at that time.
To this day Gerald continues his efforts on behalf of the children's hospital which, indeed, still needs a lot of assistance if it is to continue to serve our children.
Cass - Joy Adamson's GP - operated on her hand which had been smashed in a Land Rover accident.
Limuru cemetery - Gerald Edward Nevill, 1915 - 2003 Inscription: Nevill / Gerald Edward / in loving memory / of / Gerald / 1915 - 2003 / Rest in Peace
Web - Plarr's Lives of the Fellows Online - Gerald Nevill was a consultant surgeon in Kenya. He was born on 22 December 1915 in Nurney, County Carlow, Ireland, the son of Alexander Colles Nevill, Archdeacon of the Church of Ireland, and Rosettah Fitzgerald, a teacher of modern languages and one of the first women to graduate from the University of Dublin. He was educated at Kilkenny College, where he gained a scholarship to Campbell College, Belfast. He subsequently won the McNeil medal for mathematics and played rugby for his school. He won an entrance sizarship to Dublin University, won first class honours in all his examinations, came first in the final examinations, was awarded the Hudson medal and scholarship, and played rugby for the university.
After qualifying, he was house surgeon at the Adelaide Hospital, Dublin, Salford Royal Hospital, St Mary’s Hospital, Portsmouth, and the Royal Children’s Hospital, Brighton. From 1940 to 1944 he served with the East African Forces. He went to London to do the Guy’s FRCS course and, having passed the FRCS, returned to Kenya as the successor to Roland Burkitt in Nairobi. He was appointed honorary consultant surgeon to the Native Civil Hospital, later the King George VI Hospital, and subsequently the Kenyatta National Hospital in Nairobi. He held honorary lecturer appointments at the Makerere University Hospital, Kampala, and the University of Nairobi Medical School, and was on the organising committee of the new medical school.
He published many articles on general surgical topics in the East African Medical Journal and was a foundation member and later president of the Association of Surgeons of East Africa. Gerald Nevill married twice. His first wife was Hilda Francis Lurring, a school teacher, by whom he had three sons, one of whom became a doctor. His second marriage was to Mary Evelyn Furnivall née Brown. He continued on the rugby field for many years as a referee and was chairman of the Kenya Referees Society from 1965 to 1980. He was a keen fisherman and freemason. He died on 23 January 2003.
Rundgren - treated Eric Rundgren when he was mauled by a wounded leopard. He undoubtedly saved his arms and probably his life.

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