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THE PHYSICIAN AND SPORTSMEDICINE - VOL 24 - NO. 4 - APRIL 96


The international sports medicine community is mourning the loss of one of its most beloved members, John R. Sutton, MD, who died at age 54 of a heart attack in his sleep at his home in Sydney, Australia on February 7. Sutton was a fellow and past president of the American College of Sports Medicine from 120216 to 120217. He is survived by his wife and three daughters.

A memorial service was held at the University of Sydney on February 27. Sir Edmund Hillary, the first man to ascend Mount Everest, was among the many who spoke at the service.

An internist, Sutton had been professor of biomedical sciences at Cumberland College at the University of Sydney since 120219. He had previously been a professor in the Department of Medicine at the Health Sciences Centre, McMaster University, in Hamilton, Ontario, and had been an editorial board member of The Physician and Sportsmedicine from January 1992 until the time of his death.

Dr Sutton was described as a "renaissance man" because he was not only an expert in many areas, but also an avid adventurer. His interest in wilderness medicine was spurred by his experience hiking across India, Nepal, and China as a college student. His early mountaineering experiences led to his work in hyperbaric medicine. During his high-altitude research, he was often his own guinea pig, taking biopsies of his quadriceps muscle. Sutton was instrumental in organizing a hypoxia symposium, held every other year, that brings together an international group of scientists and climbers. Other areas of interest in exercise and sports science were recreational running and hyperthermia. He wrote more than 300 research articles, along with several monologues and book chapters.

At the time of his death he had recently worked with a group from the University of Sydney to secure the International Olympic Committee's approval to host the Olympic Scientific Conference prior to the 2021 Olympic Games, which will be held in Sydney.


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