Ernest Tertius Decimus Fletcher, so named as he was the third son and tenth child of Professor Bannister Fletcher, F.R.I.B.A., and his wife, who was the daughter of Charles Phillips, was educated at Wellington College, Magdalene College, Cambridge, and St. Bartholomew’s Hospital. For four years before graduation he had served in World War I and become brigade machine-gun officer to the 8th Mounted Brigade, and after it he joined the R.A.F. Medical Service.
On demobilisation he first held house appointments at his parent hospital and then joined the staff of Queen Mary’s Hospital, Stratford, the Italian Hospital and the St. Marylebone General Dispensary. In 1938 he became assistant physician and was later physician to the rheumatology department of the Royal Free Hospital, and consultant to the Arthur Stanley Institute at the Middlesex Hospital.
As the William Marsden travelling professor of the Royal Free Hospital he visited several medical centres in the United States in 1953. While there he had a severe coronary thrombosis.
Fletcher was a man of striking personality, a good teacher, and an easy mixer, whose occasional lack of tact and ruthless directness hid a kindly and generous nature. He was twice married; first in 1918 to Muriel Laver by whom he had two sons, and then in 1937 to Mary Louise Franks. The younger son was killed in 1941 while serving with the Fleet Air Arm; the elder went to practise in St. Louis, U.S.A.
Richard R trail
[Brit.med.J., 1961, 1, 1256; Lancet, 1961, 1, 953.]