Dr. Robert Hardaway, III

Obituary of Dr. Robert Morris Hardaway, III

Brigadier General Robert Morris Hardaway III, US Army, Retired, who treated the first wounded at the attack on Pearl Harbor, passed away peacefully in his sleep on 23 October 2019 at age 103.  He was preceded in death by his wife of 74 years, Lee Harkey Hardaway, his parents Brigadier General Robert Morris Hardaway Jr, US Army, Retired, and Olive Gray Hardaway, and by his brother Thomas Gray Hardaway.  He is survived by his children, Robert Morris Hardaway IV, Elizabeth Joan Hardaway, Thomas Gray Hardaway, II and his wife, Dorene Hardaway, and Christopher Lee Hardaway and his wife Terry Parker; by his grandchildren Valerie Hardaway Malley and her husband Michael Malley, Thomas Gray Hardaway III, Ashley Margareta Hardaway Cutler and her husband Brandon Cutler, Victoria Lee Hardaway Collins and her husband Christopher Collins, and Julia Erin Hardaway; and by his great-grandchildren Lindsay Abigail Malley, Tiffany Elizabeth Malley, Joshua Robert Malley, Lydia Marie Malley, Judith Anne Malley, and Gabriel Fizgerald Yarbrough. 

 General Hardaway was born at Camp John Hay on the island of Luzon in the Philippine Islands on 9 January 1916, delivered by his Army physician father who was stationed there.  He received his AB degree from the University of Denver in 1936, and M.D. Degree Cum Laude from Washington University in St. Louis in 1939.  After interning at New York Hospital Cornell Medical Center, he entered active duty in the U.S. Army as a First Lieutenant, Medical Corps on 1 July 1940 as a ward officer on the surgical service of Fitzsimons General Hospital, Denver, Colorado. 

In March 1941, he was transferred to Scoffield Barracks, Hawaii, where he first served first as regimental surgeon in the 8th Field Artillery Regiment, Hawaiian Division and then at the North Sector General Hospital.  On the morning of December 7, then CPT Hardaway and his wife Lee watched the Japanese planes fly low overhead on their way to bomb Pearl Harbor.  He spent the next 48 hours operating non-stop on the wounded from that attack. 

 In 1943, Dr. Hardaway was transferred to the Medical Field Service School, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, where he served on the faculty until 1945.  In this capacity, he wrote recommendations for the reorganization of the medical service of the Infantry Division, later adopted by the Army.  After World War II, he was transferred to Madigan General Hospital, Fort Lewis, Washington, to complete his surgical residency.

In 1947-1948, he was assigned as Chief of Surgical Service, 34th General Hospital in Seoul, Korea.  In 1949, he completed his surgical training at Fitzsimmons General Hospital, Denver, Colorado and was assigned as Chief of Surgical Service at the U.S. Army Hospital, Fort Belvoir, Virginia, where he organized the first pre-specialty surgical residency in the Army.

From 1954 till March 1958, he served as Chief of Surgical Service, 97th General Hospital, Frankfurt, Germany, subsequently serving as Chief of Surgery at Martin Army Hospital, Ft. Benning, Georgia.

In June 1960, he was assigned as Director, Division of Surgery, Walter Reed Institute of Research, Washington, D.C.  Over seven years, he specialized in research in the field of trauma.  During this time, he created the first trauma unit, a model upon which similar units were instituted in both military and civilian medical centers. 

In 1967 he developed the first portable intensive care unit specifically for use in the Vietnam conflict.  He personally accompanied and oversaw its implementation, during which time he was under enemy fire on multiple occasions. 

In July 1967, he assumed command of the 97th General Hospital and the Frankfurt Medical Service Area, where in 1970 he was promoted to Brigadier General and was assigned as the commanding general of William Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso, Texas.

After 36 years of devotion to the Army, he retired, and in 1976 became Professor of Surgery at Texas Tech School of Medicine in El Paso, Texas.

 He published 300 articles in professional journals and 10 books: “Syndromes of Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation”, “Clinical Management of Shock”, “Capillary Perfusion in Health and Disease”, “Shock, the Reversible Stage of Dying”, “Care of the Wounded in Vietnam”, and “Blood Problems in Critical Care”, Vols. I and II.

 Citations and decorations included: Army Commendation Medal (1964), American Defense Service Medal, Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal (IOLC), Army Occupation Medal (Japan), First Prize Army Science Conference (1964), Army Commendation Medal (1966), Legion of Merit (1967), World War II Victory Medal, Army Campaign Medal, Army Occupation Medal (Germany), Legion Service Medal (1975).

 Dr. Hardaway was a Diplomate of the American Board of Surgery, Fellow of the American College of Surgeons, Fellow American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, Fellow of the International Trauma and Surgical Intensive Care Society, a Member of the Society of Critical Care Medicine, and was recognized in “Who’s Who in America” and “Who’s Who in Texas”.

His most impressive accomplishment was as a loving father who found the time to spend with all of the family and to excite us about his interests in history, archaeology, science, and service.  Thanks to the “gilded poverty” that was the military, he and Mother traveled with us extensively to teach us about the rich world around us.   His daily tennis with our mother and his regular expression of affection for her truly modeled what one would want in a father and husband.  He will be most sorely missed.

 The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations “In Memory of Robert M. Hardaway, III” be made to the Southern Arizona Honor Flight by mail to PO Box 32649, Tucson, AZ 85751 or by going to www.honorflightsaz.org and selecting "Donate Now". 

A memorial service will be held at Bring’s Broadway Chapel at 10:00 AM on Saturday, 16 November for any local military veterans and friends who wish join us in remembering and celebrating his life.

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Memorial Service

10:00 am - 12:00 pm
Saturday, November 16, 2019
Bring's Broadway Chapel
6910 East Broadway Boulevard
Tucson, Arizona, United States
(520) 296-7193

Arlington National Cemetery
1 Memorial Drive
Arlington, Virginia, United States