A Missionary Doctor's Autobiography

by Robert M Buckley


1. Cape to Rhodesia
2. Good Hope and
 Emmanuel Mission
3. Mission Life
4. Early Schooling
5. Further Schooling
6. Medical School
7. Trip to Malawi
8. Malamulo Hospital
9. Eventful 1953/4
10. To Lesotho
11. Kanye & Kalahari
12. Yuka Hospital
13. London & Kenya
14. Kenya & Uganda
15. Walking the Valley
16. Further Studies
17. Kendu & Nairobi
18. Hong Kong
19. England & Norway
20. Maluti - Again
21. Retirement
22. Move to South Africa
Kalahari Diary


Photo Gallery


1. Maternal Great Grandparents

James Isaac Robison (1854 - 1901)

I believe that my great-grandparents, James Isaac Robison and wife Jennie Agnes lived in the Glendale area of California.


Jennie Agnes Bollman (1863 - 1957)

Her father, Samuel Bollman, was a Presbyterian minister, later a judge and then became an Adventist.

2. Maternal Grandparents

Milton (MP) and Lily Faye (Goode) Robison (Taken c. 1884), and daughters Jeanette & Doris (my mother)

I have been told that my grandmother, Lily Faye Robison, was a gifted pianist and used to play at concerts; but when she became an Adventist she gave up playing secular music and only played hymns. My aunt Jeanette married Robert Elffers, who was a florist, in Wynberg, near Cape Town.


DeWitt and Milton (MP)

This is a cute picture of my grandfather and his brother as babies.

3. Paternal Grandparents

Alfred Reginald Buckley (1855 - 1929)

Alfred became a Sabbath-keeper, solely from his study of the Bible.

Alice R. Buckley (née Field) (1865 - 1924)

My paternal grandparents both died before I was born.


4. Parents

Robert Arthur Buckley (1901 - 1960)

Robert Arthur Buckley, my father, was a lifelong missionary, serving in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe), at Good Hope Training School and for many years in Basutoland, (now Lesotho). He spent the last few years as caretaker for the Youth Camp at Anerley, on the Natal South Coast.


Our Family: Doris C (Robison) Buckley, (1908 -1979), myself and my sister and father. (Picture from Review of Aug. 11, 1938)

Although Doris, my mother, came from America, she never went back. She was trained as a teacher and taught me for the first three years of my schooling. She also filled in for an African teacher for a time, but gave up as the cost of hiring someone to look after us children was more than her salary.

5. Siblings

Robert, Nita and Brian

My sister, Nita, did almost all of her schooling at Helderberg College. She taught for a year at a farm school in Rhodesia and then married Quinton Spencer. Their son, David Spencer is ministerial secretary for the Transvaal Conference.

Brother Brian, has been a church elder for many years and recently took on the post of Manager of Magnolia Haven (a retirement facility in Pretoria).

6. Lilian Guy

In 1941

Lilian Guy trained as a Nurse in London and Norwich. As a student nurse at Ilford, London.

In 1952

Sister Guy, about the time of her move from Kanye to Malamulo.


7. Lilian and Robert

At Malamulo - 1952

"Us" standing on the steps of "No Man’s Land" - a nick-name given to the large house in which the single lady teachers and nurses lived!


At Claremont Church - 18 Jan. 1954
Front Row - Bert Clifford, Me, Lilian, Doreen Staples and
Nita Buckley. Behind - Dr CP Bringle, Ruby Lehnberg and
Pr FH Thomas.

Dr H E (Bert) Clifford married Doreen Staples and he was a surgeon (and, I believe, medical director) at the Adventist Sydney Sanatarium. Dr C P Bringle was a qualified medical doctor as well as an ordained minister - he was the Medical Secretary for the South African Division when the headquarters were still in Claremont, near Cape Town. Pr F H Thomas, who performed our marriage ceremony, was a family friend. He had four sons, two of whom had been my roommates at Helderberg College.


8. Our Family

Taken in Nairobi - March 1965

The children are John, Jane and Mary.


9. John Milton Buckley

John at Kabale School

Receiving a prize, just 10 days before he died.

The last picture of John (Taken for his passport.)


10. Hong Kong Experiences


Running on Black's Link

  Also Ran!

Winning a Medal

Lilian conducting a "Healthful Cooking " Class


11. Skogli (Norway)

Skogli Post Card


12. Maluti Hospital


Bridge Washaway!

Note that the left side of the bridge is missing.

Medical Staff - about 1992

From the Left - Ishmael Mazunda - Medical Assistant, who now runs his own clinic in Malawi; Dr Lincoln Solomon, who left to specialise in Paediatrics, Dr LeRoy Byers - Ophthalmologist is now in Togo; Dr Gustav Kirsten, myself and Dr Dikla Makola. (Dr Raoul Schneider, orthopaedic surgeon from Argentina, was not present.)


13. Retirement

On holiday by Lake Luzern in Switzerland

Our House - December 2007

My favourite picture of "Us Two"


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Au Revoir