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Canadian Doctor in China: Dr. Norman Bethune

Norman Bethune was born in 1890 in Gravenhurst, Ontario. He became a doctor and worked in Montreal. Later he travelled to Europe to assist in the fight against fascism during the Spanish Civil War.

Then, in 1938, Dr. Bethune joined a small number of Western physicians who were working in China. At that time, China and Japan were at war. It was in China that Bethune became a "hero" to the Chinese people.

Bethune liked to work near the fighting. He invented the idea of a portable hospital. This allowed the location of the hospital to change when the location of the fighting changed. If you have seen the television show M*A*S*H, it is about one of these Mobile Army Surgical Hospitals.

Bethune died in 1939 in China, where he worked as a surgeon and trained doctors.

To learn more about Dr. Bethune, try this lesson.