Edward Neale McDermott

PRCSI (1966-1968)

Born in England, Edward Neale McDermott entered University College Galway (UCG) with a scholarship in 1919 and acquired further prizes and exhibitions before graduating with first place and first-class honours in June 1924. Meanwhile, in 1922, he had taken a first-class honours BSc in anatomy and physiology and in 1923 the primary fellowship.

Having won a travelling scholarship in medicine he went to Edinburgh and set out to solve the route of infection in rat bite fever. This research period had a formative effect on Mr McDermott’s career; in the course of his experimental work he acquired a manual dexterity which proved invaluable when, while still in Edinburgh, he turned to surgery.

He accepted an invitation to act as professor of pharmacology in Galway which led to his permanent appointment to the chair. His academic respectability and versatility was sealed by FRCSI (1929), MD (1931) and MCh (1940).

Mr McDermott joined the honorary surgical staff of the Galway Central Hospital in 1930 which led to appointments as surgeon to St Enda’s Military Hospital in Ballinasloe, and as thoracic surgeon to Woodlands Sanatorium, Galway and the City Hospital Limerick. He was a member of the International Society of Surgeons and the Society of Vascular Surgeons, and a Fellow of the International College of Surgeons.

McDermott joined RCSI’s Council in 1959 and became President in 1966. He was a Knight of Malta, a Knight of St Gregory, a member of the Governing Body of UCG, and of the NUI Senate.