Hadley, 91, Left Legacy of Adventist Medical Missionary Service
Former Loma Linda dean “defined” outreach to China, India, and Afghanistan. (Posted Aug. 23, 2012)
BY ADVENTIST NEWS NETWORK STAFF
Dr. G. Gordon Hadley was dean of the School of Medicine at Seventh-day Adventist Church-owned Loma Linda University in California and for decades defined the school’s medical outreach to India, China, and Afghanistan.
Hadley, who died June 29, 2012, at age 91, also served a term as director of the Adventist world church’s Health Ministries Department.
At the helm of the Loma Linda University School of Medicine from 1977 to 1986, Hadley sharpened the school’s focus on overseas mission and spirituality in health-care education. He taught in the Department of Pathology and Human Anatomy and mentored pathology students.
LEGACY OF SERVICE: Dr. Gordon Hadley, shown here with colleagues at Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital in China, was dean of the School of Medicine at Loma Linda University from 1977 to 1986. [PHOTO: LLU]
Hadley grew up in Washington, D.C., where his father’s ministry to the region’s underprivileged population impressed upon him the value of service and compassion. From a young age he wanted to become a medical doctor.
Shortly after his graduation from Loma Linda University in 1944 (then the College of Medical Evangelists), Hadley was drafted by the U.S. military. After two years of service at the 138th Evacuation Hospital in Europe, he was discharged, and returned to Loma Linda to complete a three-year residency in pathology.
Hadley spent more than a decade teaching at Loma Linda University and completing occasional mission assignments at medical colleges in Vellore, India, and in Kabul and Jalalabad, Afghanistan.
“I remember he would tell mission stories in Sabbath school and church from his early days in Afghanistan,” said Fred Hardinge, an associate director for the Adventist world church’s Health Ministries.
“They were always so inspiring,” he added. “And he went back later in life to continue the work and relationships that he had established there. I found that so admirable.”
In 1994 Hadley assumed leadership of the Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital in Hangzhou, China, a facility owned by the Chinese government. LLU has assisted in the development and management of the hospital for several years. In 2001 Loma Linda University officials turned once again to Hadley’s leadership skills, this time with Kabul Medical Institute in mind. Although he and his wife Alphie’s relocation plans were interrupted by the September 11 terrorist attacks, Hadley did return to Afghanistan for several months, supervising an overhaul of the institution’s curriculum.
In 2011 Hadley received the Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center Lifetime Service Award for his contributions to the academic and health-care community.
His wife, Alphie; son, Walter; and two daughters, Patty and Bonnie, survive.