Irish Emergency Medicine Mourns the Passing of Leo Vella
Irish Emergency Medicine has been left saddened by the passing of Mr. Leo Vella FRCSI, FCEM, a trail blazer and leader in the specialty, who died on 14th June 2014 after a short illness.
The United Kingdom appointed its first Consultants in Accident and Emergency Medicine in 1972 and in 1974 Leo was appointed as the first Consultant in Accident and Emergency Medicine (now Emergency Medicine) in Ireland with his appointment to the Charitable Infirmary, Jervis Street, Dublin. With the closure of the Jervis Street hospital, Leo moved to Beaumont Hospital where he practiced until his retirement in 1999.
He was a founding member of the Irish Accident & Emergency Association which later became the Irish Association for Emergency Medicine and served as its first President. Leo was, in many ways, the father of Emergency Medicine in Ireland, a role recognised by the Irish Association for Emergency Medicine when it created an eponymous lecture in his honour. Leo was the first to give the lecture at the association’s Annual Scientific Meeting in Limerick in 2011.
Leo, who was a native of Valletta, Malta, is survived by his wife Anne, sons John and Conor, daughter Leonie and a wide extended family. On behalf of the Officers, Executive and Members of the Irish Association for Emergency Medicine its President, Mr. Mark Doyle, has offered the sincere condolences of the association to Anne and her family on the their sad loss, a loss shared by the many in Irish Emergency Medicine who knew Leo.
May he rest in peace.