FAMILY tributes have been paid to a respected former member of Hartlepool’s medical and church communities.
Reverend Doctor Andrew Fraser looked after people’s medical and spiritual needs for decades in his work at Hartlepool’s hospitals and then as a church minister.
He died on Thursday, January 5, aged 92.
Rev Dr Fraser, who was born and educated in Glasgow, was well known in Hartlepool.
He worked for 26 years as consultant anaesthetist at Hartlepool General Hospital.
After retiring at the age of 60, he entered the church and spent many happy years as minister for Durham Street United Reformed Church, on the Headland.
Son Ian Fraser said: “He had been lay preaching for a while, but when he retired he decided he wasn’t ready to stop working so he took up the ministry as a second vocation and career.
“He conducted many marriage services at Durham Street and was quite in demand.
“He received offers to join a number of churches some distance away but I think he decided that his connections with Hartlepool were so strong that he wanted to stay there.”
Rev Dr Fraser completed his medical training at Glasgow University before joining the Second World War in the Army medical corps.
His service took him to a number of overseas countries, including Belgium, Holland
He married his childhood sweetheart Morag in 1947 and the couple moved to Blackpool where Rev Dr Fraser worked as a GP while gaining further experience in his chosen field, anaesthesia.
In 1953 he settled in Hartlepool after getting the position of consultant anaesthetist at Hartlepool’s then three hospitals.
He and Morag, who also worked at Hartlepool’s General Hospital as a dietician, had two sons Andrew and Ian.
Ian, a chartered accountant who lives in Leeds, added: “He had a lot of good friends.
“He was a very good family man and very supportive of his family.
“He loved his work with the ministry and was very dedicated to it.”
Rev Dr Fraser always remained fiercely proud of his Scottish ancestry and was a past president of Hartlepool Caledonian Society.
He was also a keen gardener and golfer.
Rev Dr Fraser and Morag lived in the Ward Jackson Park area of town until recently when they moved to a retirement village in Middleton St George, near Darlington.
He is also survived by his two daughters-in-law, Margaret and Kate, and by his grandson James and his wife, Becky.
Rev Dr Fraser’s funeral takes place today at St George’s United Reformed Church, Park Road, Hartlepool.