Medicine: Old Friend

The last, heavy-lidded, questioning look of a dying patient proved more than young Dr. Joseph Martin Swindt could bear. Like many a conscientious general practitioner, he believed he had made a faulty diagnosis. He never wanted to be a doctor, anyhow. He wanted to be a writer. Sombrely, Dr. Martin got into a bus at Chino, Calif., east of Los Angeles, traveled 500 miles to a seashore inn north of San Francisco. And there, before poisoning himself, he wrote a long "thesis on death" to his wife and two young sons at home. The "thesis" lay beside his body when it...

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