John Vivian Goode, MD
December 24, 1899 - February 14, 1989
Photo and text taken from the "Transactions of the 119 Meeting of the American Surgical Association", April 10-12 1989
(pages 325-326).
JOHN VIVIAN GOODE, Fellow of the American Surgical Association for 40 years, died at his home in Dallas, Texas on February 14, 1989, at the age of 89. Dr. Goode was born in Fort Worth, Texas, on December 24, 1899. His father, a manager of the Fort Worth and Denver Railroad, died when John was 2 years old. His mother died when he was 9 years old, and thereafter he was raised in the home of an uncle and aunt. He received a B.A. degree from the University of Texas in Austin in 1920, after which he attended the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, receiving his M.D. degree in 1925. He remained at Hopkins for 2 additional years, first as an intern in surgery and then as an assistant resident in surgical pathology.

In 1927, Dr. Goode began a surgical residency at the Cincinnati General Hospital under the chairmanship of Mont R. Reid. Dr. Reid had undergone his own graduate surgical training at Hopkins under William S. Halsted, and was one of the foremost disciples of Halsted. Under Mont Reid's tutelage, Goode became a second-generation Halstedian, and the Halsted-Reid heritage that he acquired during the next 6 vears became a dominant influence in his surgical thinking and practice throughout the remainder of his career. On completing his chief residency in 1933, he entered the private practice of surgery at Baylor Hospital in Dallas.

At that time Baylor Medical School was still in Dallas, functioning on the same campus as Baylor Hospital. There were a few full-time professors in the basic sciences, but the clinical faculty was composed entirely of nonpaid voluntary part-time teachers. Goode quickly became involved in this program, and his talents as a meticulous surgeon and an exacting teacher soon became evident to his colleagues and to the residents and students. During an association with Baylor Medical School that lasted 6 years, he attained the rank of Clinical Professor of Surgery.

In 1943 the medical school moved to Houston, and a new school, the Southwestern Medical School, was organized in Dallas and established in temporary housing adjacent to Parkland City-County Hospital. Goode became the first acting chairman of the Department of Surgery, and served in that capacity until 1947. This school was eventually absorbed into the University of Texas system and became the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School.

Despite his notable contributions to graduate and undergraduate medical education, Goode remained primarily a practicing clinical surgeon throughout his career. During the 1940s he moved his practice to the Gaston Hospital, a small private institution in the neighborhood of Baylor Hospital. His principal clinical interests were in surgery of the breast, thyroid, and gastrointestinal tract. His virtuoso performances in the operating room became legendary, and his capabilities as a teacher were so outstanding that special arrangements were made for surgery residents from the medical school to rotate through the Gaston Hospital for assignment to him on a one-to-one basis.

In 1937, 4 years after his arrival in Dallas, John married Ludi Mai Sensabaugh, a gifted actress and singer who was prominent in Dallas theatrical and social circles. While still a senior student in S.M.U. and for 2 years thereafter, she performed on a regular Sunday night radio program that originated in Dallas. She continued to be active in the Dallas Little Theatre and in the presentation of reviews of plays. John and Ludi Mai celebrated their golden wedding anniversary 2 years before his death.

Dr. Goode became a Fellow of the American Surgical Association in 1949. He was also a member of the Southern Surgical Association, the Western Surgical Association, the Society of University Surgeons, the Texas Surgical Society, the Southwestern Surgical Congress, the Southern Surgeons Club, and the American College of Surgeons. While in medical school he was elected to Alpha Omega Alpha. In 1955 he was named president-elect of the Southwestern Surgical Congress. In 1969 he received the prestigious Marchman Award of the Dallas Southern Clinical Society, which was given "in recognition of his outstanding leadership in undergraduate and postgraduate surgery."

While still in his residency, Goode became interested in aviation and acquired his own two-seater open-cockpit plane. This was his means of conveyance when he came to Dallas in 1933 to establish his practice. The journey was notable for a series of forced landings in fields and roads that Goode accepted as a matter of course. He continued to fly his own plane for several years thereafter, and also maintained an avid interest in sports cars. However golf became his principal avocation, and remained so for the duration of his life. On his 80th birthday his golfing companions at Northwood Country Club presented him a gift of 80 golf balls. He continued to play until the age of 87, but was obliged to limit his rounds to nine holes a day.

After an illness of 2 years due to cancer of the colon, Goode died at home on February 14, 1989. His remarkable vitality had enabled him to remain active in the practice of surgery until the age of 80. He is survived by his wife, two sons, and three grandchildren. His eldest son, John V. Goode, Jr., is a chemist with Dow Chemical Company in Lake Jackson, Texas. His second son, Richard T. Goode, is a professor of English at Queen's College in Charlotte, North Carolina.

John Vivian Goode made enduring contributions to the perpetuation of the Halstedian tradition in surgery in America. He will be remembered with respect and admiration by the generations of surgeons whose careers he helped to shape. He elevated the standard of surgical practice in his community and was an adornment to his profession.