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Hampar Kelikian

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During WWII, Bob Dole was seriously injured as a result of Nazi fire on the Gothic line in Italy. After two years in V.A. hospitals, he still could not use his right arm.

In 1947, Dole went to Chicago for a consultation with Dr. Hampar Kelikian (1899-1983), an orthopedic surgeon. Kelikian, a native of Hadjin (Cilicia), came to America in 1919. In 1920, he secured a scholarship at the University of Chicago and went on to finish Rush Medical College. Kelikian refused to accept any fees from the young veteran (Kelikian's brother Siragan was killed in Italy in 1943) and he performed seven surgeries over the next five years. And he did more than operate on his patient; he gave him a fresh perspective: "We start by not thinking so much anymore about what you have lost," he said. "You must think about what you have left . . . and what you can do with it."

Kelikian wrote three monographs, all classics, on hand, ankle, and foot surgery, as well as a book on Armenian poetry.




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