Journal of the New Zealand Medical Association, 25-May-2012, Vol 125 No 1355
Henry was born in Warsaw, Poland on 9 September 1922. His parents were Gershon and Racal Leah Norodworski. He was called Asher Anshell until his name was changed when he left Europe in the late 1920s.
With his two sisters and two brothers he enjoyed a traditional Jewish upbringing rich in education. Gershon was keen to improve the family's situation.
He and his siblings emigrated to all corners of the world—including Argentina, USA, UK, France, and New Zealand.
Gershon himself initially explored Central America spending 6 months in Panama and Cuba before heading to Australia.
The rest of the family then travelled by sea from Marseille to Sydney to join Gershon. A year or so later they all moved to Auckland.
When his parents arrived in Auckland, Henry's first languages were Yiddish and Polish but he quickly learnt English and spoke without the trace of an accent for the rest of his life. Growing up in Ponsonby he attended the local school, and then Mount Albert Grammar.
He was an academic and despite his small stature was also a keen sportsman. In Otago he gained University blues in fencing and hockey. Henry spent 5 years in Dunedin at Medical School, followed by hospital work around the country.
He went to England in the early 1950s to further his studies, focusing on respiratory medicine. Research into tuberculosis took him to Kitwe, and the Copper Belt of Northern Rhodesia (now Zambia). While there in 1955 he met Joan Kaye who was travelling from England. In December 1955 Joan and Henry married in Salisbury; a marriage which was to last 56 years.
By early 1958 they returned to New Zealand; Henry completed his MD and also a Diploma in Public Health. After posts around the country he established himself as medical superintendent at Green Lane Hospital where he stayed for over 20 years. During his tenure he assisted the team at Green Lane to create a world class centre of excellence.
Henry was admired for his extensive general knowledge; the family frequently sought his opinion on all manner of subjects. Until the year before he died he still played a competitive game of tennis, and walked daily. His bridge was almost as sharp as his general knowledge. He read avidly and loved to pass on his thoughts and knowledge to the family. Typical of Henry he always encouraged others to participate.
All who knew him understood he was a modest, kind, caring man always keen to put others first. Henry passed on a great legacy to his family and those who knew him of intellectual pursuit and education, kindness, medical endeavour , strong work ethic and family values. He is survived by his wife Joan, sons Marcus and Tony and six grandchildren.
Marcus Stone wrote this obituary.
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