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Step Back In Time

November 9, 2012

Step Back in Time: Nov. 9, 2012

Step Back in Time features news items from The Daily Star 25 and 50 years ago.

25 years ago

Nov. 9, 1987

During his career, Oneonta surgeon Dr. Byron Sheesley has practiced medicine in the Gaza Strip under war-time conditions, and dealt with patients in Kenya who sold their medicine because they didn’t understand what it did.

He now plans to retire on Dec. 31 after 31 years of medical practice.

Sheesley’s interest in medical missionary work dates back to his early years as a surgeon. After graduating from medical school at the University of Buffalo, and serving a three-year residency, the Ohio-native worked for two years at a mission hospital in Puerto Rico.

“There’s a tremendous amount of satisfaction in doing these things for people who will never be able to repay you,” he said.

Sheesley, a slight, soft-spoken man, became interested in missionary work because of his faith in Christianity. It was through the church that he learned of the need, he said.

In 1958, he left Puerto Rico for a position at the Community Hospital in Stamford where he worked both in surgery and in general medicine. He was appointed to the staff of Fox Hospital in 1964 as a general surgeon.

Once in Oneonta he formed a partnership with Dr. Virgil Polley, who was also interested in medical missionary work. Oneonta Surgical Associates has since grown to six surgeons.

Sheesley said one of the purposes of the partnership was that it would allow each doctor to serve in a missionary hospital two months out of the year.


50 years ago

Nov. 9, 1962

An historic first in Oneonta came about this week with the issuance of uniforms to postal window clerks for the first time.

Now the smiling man at the window who dispenses stamps, envelopes, money orders and the like will greet his customers in a colorful jacket of Pekin Blue … a maroon bow or four-in-hand tie (optional) and a sparkling white broadcloth shirt.

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