David Brockaway Rogers
30 September 1922 - 17 July 2014
David Rogers was born 30 September 1922 in Auckland and grew up in Epsom. His father, Lionel, was a travelling sales representative for the large clothing and general store, Ross & Glendenning's Limited and his mother was Whittier (nee McLeod). David had a younger sister, Ann, who was a Downs Syndrome baby and this may have been one of the reasons that from an early age he determined to be a doctor. He attended Cornwall Park Primary School and then Auckland Grammar School where he played rugby and although not outstanding remained a keen follower of the game. He grew up making friends away from home, some resulting in life-long friendships. Ann died during David's second year at medical school.
In 1940, during the early part of World War II, David completed the medical school intermediate entry examination at Auckland University. He gained entry to the Otago Medical School and lived in Dunedin from 1941-45. David married Shirley Brown, a qualified physiotherapist, in 1946 and they had four children - Angus, Jennifer, Sarah and Michael (who was 12 years younger than Sarah). Following graduation in 1945 David was Resident Medical Officer at Auckland Hospital and then he decided to travel by ship to England to pursue surgical training. He worked at the Westminster and the London Masonic Hospitals becoming a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England in 1950. Among his mentors in London he worked under Henege Ogilvie and Sir Arthur Porritt. The family returned to New Zealand in 1953, again by ship, David working his passage back as ship's surgeon.
David was initially appointed to a full time general surgical post at Auckland Hospital and in 1958 he secured a visiting consultant post there and commenced a successful private surgical practice. His original surgical team colleague was Douglas Guthrie and this team formed a much sought after teaching unit. David took a special interest in surgery of the head and neck, particularly the thyroid and parotid. He was a gifted surgical teacher and played a prominent role in establishing a post-graduate surgical training programme in Auckland. He served as a member of the RACS Court of Examiners. David was a respected surgical colleague and had a close and long-lasting friendship with fellow Auckland surgeon, Jim Church. Both surgeons had gone to England to do their training and gained their Fellowship about the same time.
David enjoyed the outdoors and was a keen sportsman, participating in squash and tennis in his younger days and becoming an avid and competitive golfer his late 30s - playing regularly until he was 87. He was also keen on yachting and sailed small racing dinghies with his children and regularly crewed on a number of keelers, both racing and cruising. David was also an enthusiastic fly-fisherman, tying his own flies and travelling regularly to the Tongariro River until his 85th birthday. He always enjoyed the duck shooting opening weekend.
David was an active Rotarian becoming President of the Auckland Rotary Club in 1990. He and Shirley had a wide circle of friends within and outside medicine and they regularly travelled overseas with friends.
David is survived by wife Shirley and their 4 children - Angus, the eldest (a lawyer in Auckland, married with two adult sons); Jenny (a vineyard owner in Hawkes Bay, married with two adult sons); Sarah (a media worker in Auckland, married); and Michael (a bank worker in Auckland, married with a son and two daughters).
This obituary is based on that provided by Harry Lawrence McIntyre Smith FRCS, FRACS with contributions from the family.