Peter Gormly

Vale Peter Gormly:  Casey 73, Mawson, AAD HO and Round Trips 1978 – 1995

Des Lugg and Jeff Ayton have advised of the passing of Dr Peter Gormly, formerly Senior Medical Officer of the Australian Antarctic Division. 

Peter died after a brief illness at the Royal Hobart Hospital on 24/3/2012 just shy of his 75th birthday and is survived by his wife , Mrs Lorraine Gormly, and daughter, Kirsty Gormly and family, of Adelaide, and his son Andrew in London.

Peter was born and studied in New Zealand. While working as an orthopaedic surgeon in the remote Isles of Scotland he applied for ANARE in 1972 and was interviewed by Sir Vivian Fuchs. 

He wintered at Casey Station in 1973, returning to Melbourne  AAD Head Office in 1974 to complete human biology and medicine research projects. After a  sojourn at the Canberra Hospital, Peter wintered at Mawson Station in 1977. His medical and surgical expertise was well utilised during the year in medicine and veterinarian practice including a laparotomy for bowel obstruction on Deefa, the Husky. 

Peter was permanently appointed to AAD Head Office as a Medical Officer on 22 November 1978 and was Senior Medical Officer until his retirement in 2007.  He was well known for his skills and experience in first aid, field survival and celestial navigation.  On the former, he was responsible for the famous guides and first aid manuals used by Antarctic expeditioners, mountaineers and trekkers around the world. His short course and guide to celestial navigation was attended by many. 

He will be widely remembered for his realistic and stomach churning simulations and presentations during the pre departure period that put the fear of God and torrid seas into us all!  

In recognition of Dr Peter Gormly’s significant contribution to the Antarctic, he was awarded the Australian Antarctic Medal in 1991. He retired from the Australian Antarctic Division in 2007 after an association of 35 years with ANARE and the AAD.

Information supplied by Des Lugg and Jeff Ayton with thanks.