Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Good Doctor

When I saw a headline about a long-time Northern doctor having passed away I had a feeling it might be Dr. Otto Schaefer and when I clicked on the link it was to discover that the good doctor had passed away. I first became familiar with the man and his work through the book Sunrise Over Pangnirtung. For a number of years now, I've kept a little mental list of northerners I'd love to meet over coffee and Dr. Schaefer was definitely on that list. The closest connection I have to the man is through a chance meeting a few years ago with the grandson of his Inuk assistant Etuangat.

The North is full of people who move up from the urban South for a short while before retreating to sunnier climes. Dr. Schaefer was a welcome exception. For this, and for a life dedicated to improved the lives of his fellow human beings, the man has my utmost respect.