Tayside doc who served in Iraq loses cancer fight

Dr Sam Rawlinson served 22 years in the TA and visited Iraq and Afghanistan as a defence consultant adviser.

A TAYSIDE specialist in blood transfusion, who saw action in the Gulf War and the invasion of Iraq, has died after suffering from a malignant brain tumour.

Dr Sam Rawlinson, 58, was also formerly the clinical director at the East of Scotland Blood Transfusion Centre based at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee.

His contribution to the cause was significant for many patients across the UK, including army personnel fighting abroad.

Sam died peacefully at home in Abernethy on March 13 having been diagnosed with a brain tumour in June 2015.

Originally from Colchester, Essex, Dr Rawlinson graduated from St Andrews University and began his specialisation in haematology and transfusion medicine in 1987.

He went on to serve 22 years in the Territorial Army RAMC(V) and “Colonel Sam” also commanded both Dundee-based 225 General Support Medical Regiment and 205 Scottish Field Hospital.

He participated in two operational tours in 1991 and 2003 and visited both Iraq and Afghanistan on a number of occasions as a defence consultant adviser.

Dr Rawlinson helped design and deliver a service which provided transfusion support to patients injured in both Afghanistan and Iraq and his techniques have now been adopted across the UK.

His contribution was recognised with a number of awards, including an OBE in 2009.

Dr Rawlinson was described by his family as someone who had “a sharp wit and great sense of humour and fun, but at the same time had a strong sense of duty, loyalty and commitment to everything”.

His family added: “Many people in Tayside, Scotland and the UK are here, but unaware, thanks to this quiet, unassuming, modest man whose contribution to the world of blood transfusion is, and will continue to be, greatly missed.”

He leaves behind wife Beena and his two sons, Benno, 29, who is an endurance racer and adventurer, and Fraser, 26, who plays rugby and is a Royal Marine.