Martin P. Sayers
1961, New York
A Middle Westerner and a graduate of The Ohio State University, Dr. Sayers became, before entering medical school, a close friend of Harry E. LeFever, professor ofneurosurgery at the Ohio State University. Through Dr. LeFever's influence he chose Philadelphia General Hospital and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania for postgraduate training.
In 1950, Jim Gay, visiting in Philadelphia, extended an invitation for Dr. Sayers to become a Congress of Neurological Surgeons founder. Doctor Sayers was in his last year of training.
Dr. Sayers became the llth president of the Congress in 1961. This period was one of rapid growth in membership and intensive effort to help young neurosurgeons to become Board certified and to set up a habit of continuing education. The members weeded out a few impostors, forged stronger relationships, and planned joint ventures with the other American neurosurgical societies. The Congress of Neurological Surgeons had become the largest neurosurgical organization in the world at that time.
Dr. Sayers was a pioneer pediatric neurological surgeon. He became assistant professor of neurological surgery at Ohio State in 1953 and chief of pediatric neurosurgery in 1954, establishing one of the country's earliest pediatric neurological surgery services at Columbus Children's Hospital. He was instru mental in starting there, in 1959, the first multidisciplinary central nervous system birth defects clinic in the United States. He helped to establish the Pediatric Section of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and became the chairman; later he was president of the Neurosurgical Society of America. Academically, he progressed to clinical professor in 1973.
As a young pediatric neurological surgeon, Dr. Sayers helped to push the treatment of myelomeningocele forward to the immediate postnatal period and to improve shunting procedures for hydrocephalus. A number of new and improved procedures were developed and over 30 young neurosurgeons received pediatric training under his supervision.
Pete has two sons, a physician and an airline pilot; two lovely daughters, both attorneys; and 11 grandchildren. He and Marjorie are both quite healthy at this reporting. Since retirement in January 1986, he has been clinical professor emeritus of neurological surgery at The Ohio State University. He gave the third annual Donald D. Matson memorial address, titled "The Limbus of Evolution," at the American Association of Neurological Surgeons meeting in 1989, after retirement.