Obituary - Dr Archie Rankin, of Aspatria
Last updated at 13:34, Friday, 22 March 2013
Retired Aspatria GP Dr Archie Rankin has died at the age of 85.
He was born in Aspatria in 1928 after his father, also Dr Archie Rankin, came to work in the town with Dr McQuarrie in the 1920s.
The family lived at Beacon View and then at Brandraw House.
In the days when there were not so many cars on the road, young Archie would accompany his father on his rounds by sitting on his knee and steering while Archie senior read the paper.
He attended the Friends’ School at Wigton, before heading to Glasgow University, aged 16, to study history because he was still too young to start medicine.
Dr Rankin did his national service as a captain in the Royal Army Medical Corps in Germany, and then came back to work with his father.
He always recalled his first surgery, wondering why there were no patients coming through his door, then discovering a waiting room full of patients all preferring to wait and see his father, rather than entrust their care to the new starter.
As a young doctor, Dr Rankin attended a lecture in Carlisle given by Elaine Lister, a doctor in obstetrics and gynaecology. They fell in love and married in 1958 and had two children, Robert and Elizabeth.
The couple practised medicine together in Aspatria until she retired in 1987 and he in 1990.
Dr Rankin was known for his vast general knowledge and a love of learning that never stopped.
He attended adult education classes at Beacon Hill School, Aspatria, and in Carlisle on subjects including local history, birdwatching, sailing and microwave cooking.
He loved the outdoors and when Robert was as young as five, they would cycle to Allonby and back. He loved trout fishing, birdwatching, fell walking and curling.
He contributed to medical politics at both local and national and level.
He was a member of council of the British Medical Association in the 1960s, chairman of the Cumbria Family Practitioner Committee 1974-84, chairman of the Local Medical Committee 1978-88 and chairman of the Cumbria faculty of the Royal College of General Practitioners.
He was a Fellow of the British Medical Association and of the Royal College of General Practitioners.
He was a loyal member of the Aspatria Curling Club. He was president of the Aspatria Angling Club, and president of the Wigton Old Scholars’ Association.
When the Aspatria care home Park Lodge was threatened with closure, he got on the phone and wrote letters to protest.
In retirement he remained active, and when his wife became ill he looked after her until her death in 2000.
Despite his busy life, over a 40-year career, his patients were his priority and he took a deep interest in their continued health and welfare. He kept up with modern medicine and was unfailing in his support of younger colleagues.
He was considered to be a loyal friend and made loyal friends both among colleagues and in the community.
He died at home in Aspatria, not far from where he was born.
Dr Rankin, who died on March 9, is survived by his son Robert, daughter Elizabeth and sister Sheila.
First published at 13:04, Friday, 22 March 2013
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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