It was great to hear from Alex Marshall a new member at our recent Zoom meeting.
Alex, a country boy from Wycheproof passed on the story of his life experiences from being the son of a doctor to being a leading Gastrologist working in the Austin Hospital, a leading public hospital in Melbourne.
His early life was as part of a family of five in a country environment riding bikes and attending school. He eventually progressed to University College with cardiology in mind, but failed third year medicine. More importantly though, he met a young lady, Libby Jones who eventually became his wife.

After his failure at University, he spent some time building dams and learning a little of life away from schools. He re-entered the medical world where gastrology become his interest. He passed this time and advised us of his early Intern experience where he would be in hospital for three or four days working 14-hour shifts.
He then travelled overseas for some years, including a stay in Scotland where he visited the Big Pineapple built in 1761. His special comments on this historic item were as follows:
“The Dunmore pineapple, a 14-metre-high stone pineapple, was built in Scotland a short distance from Stirling, as a garden folly. It was built in 1761 by John Murray, the 4th Earl of Dunmore, more than 200 years before the Big Pineapple, 16 metres high, was constructed on the Sunshine Coast. The building incorporated a hothouse in which pineapples were grown. Additional heating was provided by a furnace-driven system that circulated hot air through cavities in the wall construction of the adjacent hothouse buildings.

There is accommodation in the buildings immediately adjacent to the Pineapple and we stayed there in the 1980's. A great base from to explore local attractions.”
Alex talked further about several advances in medicine which excited him and he passed on some guidelines that we older members should follow.
  1. Alcohol and the liver problems resulting
  2. Viral Hepatitis
  3. Hepatitis C -   became curable in 1989
  4. Colon cancer – second most dangerous with 100 Aussies dying weekly
  5. Endoscopy – bile duct and gall stone problems.
Lots of questions came from the audience and we thank Alex for his story and most interesting background, and his great work in the medical system.
John Hudson
Meeting Chairman