Development & Alumni Relations Office 

Shaun Francis Gillespie, MB, BCh, BAO, FRCPsych (died 24 November 2011)

Shaun was born in Lisburn on 27th September 1964, second son of Hugh and Valerie Gillespie, and spent his early years there before his family moved to Londonderry in 1973 .He was a pupil of Foyle College where  he played a full part in school life and activities.  His main games being rugby and cricket in which he represented the school at all age levels; He was a talented musician, playing ‘cello, clarinet and piano; a member of orchestra and choir and of the Western Area Youth orchestra. He took part in several operatic productions and his dramatic performance as Sir Roderick in Ruddigore was considered the highlight of the production.  He was a member of the Scout Troop and involved in the Duke of Edinburgh’s activities and Outward Bound scheme.

Always at or near the top academically, he was Deputy Head Boy in 1982-83 and proceeded to study medicine at QUB and graduated in 1988.

Shaun was a man of multiple, passionately pursued enthusiasms, many developed in his adolescence - fishing, fly-tying, metal-detecting, photography, stamp-collecting, cycling, golf, music and meteorology.  Shaun took daily weather readings over many years and he would chart and graph his results annually.  He continued all of these interests into adult life and added gardening as another passion which helped him relax.  He was good company with a warm sense of humour and was an accomplished communicator and public speaker.

Encouraged by Professor Roy McClelland, he switched his specialism from obstetrics to psychiatry, which was his calling for the rest of his life. 

Shaun married Pamela Douglas, a fellow doctor graduate of QUB and also a talented musician, in 1990, and settled in Belfast, where their sons James and Simon were born in 1994 and 1998 respectively; his family became the centre of his life. 

 In 2000 he became a consultant psychiatrist with the Derbyshire NHS Foundation Trust.  Shaun derived his greatest satisfaction from working with individual patients who, with his colleagues, have said what a caring, compassionate, gentle and sensitive doctor Shaun was.  He was also highly regarded by graduates whom he taught.  The esteem in which he was held by his patients and colleagues was recognised in 2009 when Shaun was elected to a fellowship of the Royal College of Psychiatrists.  Shaun was the living embodiment of the Hippocratic Oath which entreats the physician to “remember that there is art to medicine as well as science, and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon's knife or the chemist's drug”.

 

 

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