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John R. Bookwalter



Chief of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery at Brattleboro Memorial Hospital
Known for his "humanistic" approach to patient care and his abiding interest in disease prevention, he is widely recognized as an innovator in the field of modern surgery for inventing the "Bookwalter Retractor" , the most widely used surgical retractor.

Dr. Bookwalter is from Columbiana, Ohio. His mother was a nurse and his father and grandfather were doctors. He attended Amherst College and Harvard Medical School, followed by a six-year surgical residency in the Harvard Surgical Service (Fifth) at Boston City Hospital and two years as a Major in the Army Medical Corps at Fort Bragg. , North Carolina. He returned to New England Deaconess Hospital in Boston for a final year of cardiothoracic surgery and then moved to Brattleboro, Vermont, where he has practiced surgery since 1973. He subsequently rejoined the Army Reserves, eventually reaching the rank of Full Colonel.

Dr. Bookwalter is currently a member of the American College of Surgeons, the New England Vascular Society, and the New England Surgical Society.
“The opportunity for improvement comes from something that is difficult.”

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