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Deck, John Feild (1835–1929)

Dr. John Feild Deck died at his home on Wednesday night, in his 95th year, at Ashfield, where he had lived for over half a century. Dr. Deck graduated M.D. at the University of St. Andrew in 1862. He was a Licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians, London, and a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, England.

After spending a few years of his early manhood in the infant settlement at Nelson (New Zealand), young Deck returned to England in 1859, and began the study of medicine. He was gold medallist of his year at St. Thomas's Hospital, going thence to the University of St. Andrew.

Thus prepared for his life's work, Dr. Deck returned to New Zealand, and practised his profession at Invercargill and Dunedin until 1875. Two years later he settled at Ashfield. There he founded the Homoeopathic Hospital in 1902, and occupied throughout the rest of his life the position of medical superintendent.

In the early days of his practice at Ashfield, the late Dr. Deck and the late Dr. Richard Jones were the only doctors between Sydney and Parramatta.

Dr. Deck was a remarkable man in many ways. Even in the shadow of his great age his mind retained the resilience of early life, and as science broadened men's vision, he studied succeeding innovations with an enthusiasm for knowledge as keen as that of the youngest generation. He had the warmest sympathy for foreign mission work, and five of his children are or have been on the missionary field. For many years the late Dr. Deck was on the councils of the China Inland Mission, the South Sea Evangelical Mission, and the Egypt General Mission.

Dr. Deck married Emily Baring Young, daughter of the late Mr. Henry Young, of the Indian Civil Service. Mrs. Deck died 15 years ago.

There were 11 children, all of whom are living. They are Dr. G. H. Baring Deck (Sydney), Dr. J. Northcote Deck (London), Dr. Ernest F. Deck (Sydney), Dr. H. Leigh Deck (Ashfield), Mr. Norman C. Deck, missionary, in the Solomon Islands; and Misses Kathleen, Constance, and Joan Deck (missionaries in the Solomons; Mesdames W. H. R. Grant (Sydney), Douglas Porter, Egypt General Mission (London), and Miss Phyllis Deck, China Inland Mission, Shansi Province, China.

The funeral will take place to-day.

Original publication

Citation details

'Deck, John Feild (1835–1929)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/deck-john-feild-19518/text30884, accessed 18 September 2019.

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