Donald “Barry” Appleton OAM, FRACP (Class of 1958)
Barry Appleton graduated in medicine at UQ in 1965. Few things are more distressing than seeing a baby or child in pain. It was the motivation and expertise of Barry Appleton to ease their pain when their anxious parents brought them to him. Barry Appleton was a young paediatrician specialising in neurology in 1971 when he was awarded a Churchill Fellowship to study the nervous system in children.
Barry’s Churchill Fellowship enabled him to spend a year at Washington University’s St Louis Hospital where he writes in his report; he had ‘exposure to people with real skills in the management of children with neurological problems.’ St Louis Hospital had six full-time child neurologists, at a time when Australia had only one.
Barry began this continuing relationship by taking the first step, which he could never have done without his Churchill Fellowship. St Louis is still regarded as a centre for excellence but Barry reflects that Australia too can now be regarded as a centre for excellence. He told oral historian Lesley Jenkins in 2009 that the epilepsy centres in Melbourne and Sydney are first-rate and that neuromuscular research is evolving and making rapid progress in this country.
During his career, he has been an adviser to the Cerebral Palsy League, the Autistic Children’s Association and the Epilepsy Association and has served as a Medical Officer in the RAAF Reserve from 1979-2001.
In 2002 Barry was awarded Medal of the Order of Australia for service to medicine, particularly in the field of paediatric neurology, to the community through the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust, and to the Australian Defence Force as a clinician. #igsoldboys