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EMS Pioneer Dr. John McDade, 84, Dies

Dr. John P. McDade, son of John B. and Genevieve Hayes McDade, “Doc Mac” was born Nov. 23, 1928 in Scranton, Pa., and passed away on June 14, 2013 at the age of 84 years. He took all his schooling in Scranton, graduating from Valley Forge Military Academy and then the University of Scranton. Following his undergraduate, he enlisted in the National Guard for four years. From there, he attended and graduated from Temple University Medical School in Philadelphia. This began a lifelong passion for the Temple Owls Basketball team. He did his residency at Temple.

Dr. McDade began private practice in Alexandria, Va., and spent his whole career in that area. He started, along with three other doctors, the Alexandria Private Plan and the Emergency Department of Alexandria Hospital. His illustrious career included the 1986 John Wiegenstein Leadership Award for outstanding contributions to American College and as president of the ACEP (American College of Emergency Physicians). He was at the forefront of development of Emergency Medical treatment and was instrumental in establishing protocol and procedures for EMT and EMS services. Along with many physicians in the Fairfax area, he trained paramedics as first responders. It was under his leadership that many of the “firsts” in emergency and triage treatment began in the United States. Today the hospital where many of these protocols were established is known as Ivona Fairfax Hospital. In many ways, he truly is responsible for saving the lives of hundreds, if not thousands, of people who otherwise would never have even made it to the emergency room. To this day, the John P. McDade Award for Research in Emergency Medical Care is given by the Board of Directors of the Virginia College of Emergency Physicians. Dr. McDade was a founding member of the Virginia College and a distinguished leader and Past President of the American College of Emergency Physicians.

He was married to Sonja July 12, 1968, after having met in Washington D.C. at a dinner party. In 1990 he retired and they moved to Brevard County in 1991. His hobbies included golfing, sailing (even sailing his boat to British Virgin Islands), and much music – including opera, classical, jazz. He was passionate about the Rat Pack music, Frank Sinatra, etc.

Dr. McDade is survived by his wife of almost 45 years; his two sons Peter (and wife Estrallita) of Melbourne, Fla.; Brendan (and his wife Naomi) of Viera, Fla.; three sisters: Mary Gene Butler of Scranton, Pa.; Ann Dwyer of Secor, Ill.; Genevieve "Gingie" and husband Dr. Joseph Tuthill of Ipswich, Mass., and a brother (former U.S.Congressman) Joseph McDade and wife Sarah of Arlington, Va. He also leaves behind three grandsons – Pete’s sons Shawn and Jason; and Brendan’s son Ronnie. He also has many friends of his and Sonya’s who mourn his loss.

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Obituary and guestbook published at www.beckmanwilliamson.com.

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