Friday, July 03, 2009

Introducing...

I’m continuing the medical theme here today.

This is Toby.

Toby was a male of about 17 or 18 and family history reports that he was probably from Russia or France. Of course there are no guarantees that the whole skeleton belonged to one person but the long bones and the sutures in the skull inform us of his approximate age. The pelvis identifies his gender. All medical students are required a half skeleton though now they are man made and not real ones.

Toby is almost a member of our family. He was purchased as half a skeleton from Adam, Rouilly in the early 1930s for the start of Cousin Bing’s medical degree at the Middlesex Hospital. Albert Vivian (“Bing”) Stevens (he could sing like his namesake) is from my Welsh family. He qualified in 1939, joined up and went straight to France in the Royal Army Medical Corps.

Cousin Bing was awarded the Military Cross for a string of acts of bravery recorded in Dunkirk. It was only after he died that we discovered he had also been awarded an OBE for work to alleviate disease during the Bengal famine. He never spoke about it.

After Bing died in 1997, the Imperial War Museum contacted his widow, Margaret, to ask if they might be able to have the personal papers relating to the time in Calcutta.

Next, Toby the skeleton went…

4 comments:

SueG said...

Ooh, this is going to be interesting....

Debs said...

Oh how fascinating.

Carol said...

I love the random things that you share about your family...looking forward to the next bit

C x

SpiralSkies said...

Wow, this has the makings of something intriguing...