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Franklyn Gilbert Bell MB BS, FRCS, FRACS

Frank Bell was an outstanding orthopaedic surgeon, known for his strong work ethic, forthright nature and integrity, and excellent teaching and mentoring.

Frank was born on 6 July 1926, the third of five children of Maston and Bessie Bell. He spent his childhood on the family’s 2-acre property in Mount Lawley (now an inner suburb of Perth). His daily chores included helping at the Albany Bell chicken hatchery, chopping wood and milking the cow. He sold lemons to buy himself a horse that he adored; sometimes he rode as far as Scarborough Beach.

Frank gained a scholarship to Perth Modern School in Subiaco, where he appreciated the excellent tutors and mentors, and enjoyed woodworking and metalworking. Despite being told he was not “suitable” for a medical career, he finished with five credits and began his first year of medicine at the University of Western Australia. Along with his cohort, he completed the remaining years at the University of Adelaide, graduating with distinctions and a prize in ophthalmology in 1949.

After working as a registered medical officer at the Royal Adelaide Hospital, he decided to pursue a career in orthopaedics. He returned to Perth to Princess Margaret…

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