Biographical Notes re
Charles A. (Chuck) Stone
Page 4 of 4 Pages, of Chapter 7,
A NEW DIRECTION
|When Les reported to the hospital, the hospital commander had assigned a new, just reassigned, doctor to his case. He was not allowed to see Les’s medical records. Within 30 minutes of his examination, the doctor said they would have to do a biopsy. Through tests, they quickly determined that Les had a massive, inoperable, cancerous tumor in his upper chest. Les received intensive treatment, from that point on, but was not long for this world. After spending time getting extreme radiation treatments at Scott AFB, he was returned to Offutt for his final days. The local doctor, that had been misled by his medical records history as a malingerer, came in to apologize. Les’s final comments to him were that with he, Les, was obviously a conscientious, dedicated career military man with impeccable performance records, and it seemed to him that the least they could done was to take him seriously when he begged for their attention. The doctor turned away and departed, shaking his head.
Recently, while confirming the above details with Les’s wife, Mary, she offered these final comments. “I might add that, in order not to meet a board, he flew when he couldn't even sit up straight because of the extreme pain. I remember his comment after that last flight [If that was indeed my last flight, I made one of the smoothest landings of my career.]”
I could rehearse other stories of people who were plagued and maltreated by this same Flight Surgeon who must have had his own deep fear of flying, to the point that he could not comprehend that “flying was our life, our dream, our choice, our future, our honor and our pleasure”.
Moving on, the Base Surgeon arranged to have me admitted to the local Veterans Administration Hospital. There they began a careful analysis of my history and condition. As doctors at other hospitals had discovered, my case was complex, compounded by the unknown effects of old polio and a number of unknowns. The good news here is that they didn't just send me back to duty because they could not figure it out. The two orthopedic doctors, after extensive evaluations, concluded they would make the big cut, remove a few disks, take bone off the hip and fuse my lower spine. I was ready for anything. On the big day, they called in Doctor Gogela, the local neurosurgeon specialist, as an advisor and went to work.
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