x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Patients and Al Ain's Oasis Hospital staff mourn loss of Doctor 'Heart'

Oasis Hospital mourns death of long-term physician Larry Liddle.

Larry Liddle and his wife took over the running of Al Ain's Oasis Hospital from the founding missionaries. Courtesy of the Liddle family
Larry Liddle and his wife took over the running of Al Ain's Oasis Hospital from the founding missionaries. Courtesy of the Liddle family

Tributes were being paid to a popular doctor yesterday following his death at the weekend.

Larry Liddle served at Al Ain's Oasis Hospital for more than 30 years, earning the nicknames Dr Fowad, or heart, and Laila, which means loving kindness.

"During his 33 years serving the people of the Abu Dhabi region at Oasis Hospital, Dr Liddle earned a reputation as a compassionate man with a deep love of God and the people of the United Arab Emirates," said a hospital statement on behalf of its staff.

"His loving service and dedication to those who those he served are a legacy that will always be remembered by those who knew him."

Liddle only intended to stay in the UAE a few months when he arrived in Al Ain in 1975 with his wife and two children.

But he fell in love with the hospital, the first private facility in Abu Dhabi, and spent the rest of his medical career there.

He treated thousands of patients, helping the hospital - launched by missionaries Pat and Marian Kennedy in 1960 - to develop into a leading medical establishment.

In his 32 years at the hospital, he and his wife Marilyn, a nurse, became much loved by colleagues and patients.

They retired in 2008 and the hospital renamed its outpatient clinic to the Fowad Outpatient Clinic in honour of their dedication. They were the longest serving doctor and nurse at the facility.

Staff and patients joined in mourning yesterday after learning of his death at his home in Illinois on Saturday at the age of 68. He had suffered from dementia

He is survived by his wife and their children, Darlene Swartz and Greg Liddle, and five grandchildren.

Mrs Liddle said: "My dear husband, Larry, has fought the good fight and finished the race and now is promoted to Heaven.

"The Lord called him home after his long bout with dementia.

"We as his family are grieving but not without hope that one day we will join him in glory.

"We have seen so many ways the Lord has been with us and shown His faithfulness through this long journey."

jbell@thenational.ae