Raymond Leon Carroll FRACS
Otolaryngologist Head and Neck Surgeon
2 June 1937 - 20 July 2014
Ray Carroll was not only a well-respected ENT surgeon at St Vincent's Hospital with rooms in Macquarie Street, but he also devoted an enormous amount of time and energy to the professional society, Australian Society of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery (ASOHNS). He became a member in 1971 and remained an active one for the next 43 years. For more than half of this time, he served on various committees at State, Federal and International levels. He was also an active member of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.
For the State, he was on the NSW Executive Council for five years finishing up as Chairman in 1979. During that year, he was one of the main organisers of the Asia Oceania ENT Conference held at the Wentworth Hotel. This was the biggest Ear Nose and Throat conference held in Australia up until then with many Korean and Japanese visitors attending.
He then moved onto the Australian federal body where he began by representing NSW on the Federal Council.
This was the beginning of a very long association that lasted for 14 years, progressing to Secretary, Vice President, President in 1989-90 and then Past President of the OLSA, (Otolaryngological Society of Australia), as the Society was called in those days.
We have to remember that there was no email or electronic banking in the 1980s. The ASOHNS office was in St Leonards, so every Friday afternoon for 14 years, Ray would drop in on his way home to sign cheques and reassure the solitary secretary on important matters.
He was also the ASOHNS representative to the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons, as well as serving as an examiner.
In 1998 Ray was asked to come back onto the ASOHNS Federal Council for several more years to provide help and advice with his voice of experience. He had an encyclopaedic memory of past events and what had been tried before successfully or unsuccessfully. His summations were always spot on but delivered with a dry sense of humour that often drew a smile - he was the master of the "one liner" and often had fellow committee members laughing over a drink after a meeting.
As for the world stage, his international duties included being the Australian delegate for the Asia Oceania Congress on three occasions.
He subsequently became involved with IFOS, the International Federation of Otolaryngological Societies.
He was the Australian delegate to IFOS in 1989. Then, after being part of the successful bid team at the 1993 IFOS meeting, he was the organising Secretary of the World IFOS Congress held in Sydney in 1997. This event was, and still is, the biggest ENT conference ever held in Australia, with more than 3,000 registrants, and helped put Australia on the map in the ENT world.
Ray put in an enormous amount of time into making this Congress the huge success that it was. He was rewarded by the memorable opening ceremony at the packed Sydney Opera House when the then Governor General, Sir William Deane, welcomed the Organising Committee onto the stage and officially opened the Congress.
Later, from 2001 - 2009, he was the delegate for the Asia Oceania region to IFOS, which involved regular trips overseas.
Throughout all of this, Ray was always generous with his time in taking calls from colleagues needing help with tricky questions about industrial deafness claims, because he knew everything there was to know about that subject.
So what drove Ray to do all this voluntary work for ASOHNS, the RACS and the International Societies?
It was all a matter of providing a framework for the continuing medical education of ENT surgeons, and for the training of Registrars.
He was the first to be made a Life Member of ASOHNS in 2004 for outstanding service to the Society and then in 2010, he received the Society Medal for Distinguished Service to ASOHNS.
Ray died unexpectedly at home and is survived by his children and his grandchildren.
Robert Payten FRCS
Australian Society of Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery