Retirement what Geraldton doctor Thomas Buckley ordered

Headshot of Peter Sweeney
Peter SweeneyGeraldton Guardian
Thomas Buckley has retired.
Camera IconThomas Buckley has retired. Credit: Peter Sweeney

Thomas Buckley laughs as he says: “What are you doing here?”

Which is a fair question when one hasn’t got an appointment — especially to see a doctor.

But, according to second last day secretary/receptionist Sue, going in unannounced was the best way of getting words from Dr Buckley.

Dr Buckley walked out of his consulting rooms for the last time on Wednesday after a 40-plus year career serving the sick of Geraldton.

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He came here from Cork in Ireland. When asked why, he replies: “Oh, that’s a long story.”

In his 70th year — but looking as though he could get many kicks on the footy field — the doctor with a sharp sense of humour delivered countless babies.

“Probably did that (delivered babies) for 30, 35 years,” the GP says. “Medical practice is just like a packet of licorice allsorts . . . you don’t know what you’re going to get next.

“You’re not sure what’s going to happen when someone comes through the door.

“But would I do it all again? Of course, I would.”

Quizzed if he could relate “a few” good stories, Dr Buckley replies in the affirmative. “I could, but they would have to be in Gaelic so you wouldn’t understand them,” he says.

Once an owner of racehorses, he says there is a way of making a fortune from them.

“You can (make a fortune), it’s just that you have to start with a bigger fortune,” he adds.

Asked what he is going to do, Dr Buckley replies: “No idea.”

Quizzed if he may leave Geraldton, he is quicker to add: “No, no way.”

The father of three and grandfather of six offers some advice on living long and strong.

“Eat well, exercise well, be comfortable with your partner and ... no, I won’t say that. Alright, drink well.”

Told I wished I’d met him earlier, he retorts: “I’d have given you a bollocking. I may even have made ya healthy.”

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