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Dynamic Chiropractic – April 23, 2001, Vol. 19, Issue 09
Dynamic Chiropractic
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"Kodak is Herb's Middle Name" - The Remarkable Dr. Lee, Part I

By Joseph Keating Jr., PhD

He's known about Toronto as a fitness guru and the longest serving member of the faculty at the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College (CMCC); actually, he taught the first class there on 18 September 1945. But Herbert Kenneth Lee, the grand old man of the CMCC, has been busy in his profession for even longer. He is the eldest of several sons born to Ernest and Sophia Lee in Peterborough, Ontario on 5 November 1910 (Dzaman et al., 1980, p. 148), while D.D. Palmer was still teaching and practicing in Portland, Oregon (Keating, 1993). At age 90, Dr. Lee is still going strong, as suggested by a photo appearing in the Toronto Star on 30 September 2000 (see Figure 1).

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 1: The caption from this September 2000 photograph appearing in the Toronto Star reads "FLEX MASTER: Dr. Herbert Lee demonstrates stretching exercise to stay limber." Dr. Lee recommends dancing to keep limber, as well as participation in the annual five kilometer walk to benefit the CMCC. He's frequently interviewed on Toronto radio and TV stations for his health advice.

Herb earned his grade XII diploma from Peterborough Collegeiate Institute in 1927, was still an teenager when the stock market crashed in 1929. He took correspondence courses in accounting from LaSalle University in Chicago, and worked for Western Clock Company and Manufacturer's Life Insurance Company in Toronto before enrolling at the National College of Chiropractic (NCC) in 1937 (Brown, 1990). His move to Chicago was inspired by the apparent benefit he had received from Peterborough chiropractor Mark Goodwin and Toronto practitioner Herbert Hill, D.C., who urged Herb to consider a career in chiropractic. The young man judged the NCC to be the strongest academic institution in the profession, and its four year course met the licensing requirements for DCs in Ontario (Brown, 1990).

At the NCC Herb became good friends with recent graduates and new NCC faculty members Joseph Janse, D.D.T., D.C., N.D., and Raymond Houser, D.C., N.D. (Figures 2 and 3). Another close friend during his college years was Mark Van Wagoner, D.C., a future trustee of the NCC (see Figures 4 and 7). George Gunther, D.C., D.D.T., N.D. of Bridgeport, Connecticut, a future member of his state's legislature, and Gordon L. Holman, D.C., N.D., active in professional affairs in the United States, were also Herb's classmates.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 2: Dr. Joseph Janse dissecting at the National College of Chiropractic in Chicago, circa 1940.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 3: Dr. Raymond Houser, future dean of the Los Angeles College of Chiropractic, lectures at his alma mater, the National College of Chiropractic in Chicago, circa 1940.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 4: Student Mark Van Wagoner, graduate of the National College with Dr. Lee in 1941, is seen at far left during work in the anatomy laboratory circa 1939; faculty member L.M. Tobison, D.C., D.D.T. is seen at far right.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 5: Intern Herb Lee at the National College, circa 1940.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 6: Clinicians and interns at National's training clinic, circa 1940.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 7: Mark Van Wagoner, D.C., N.D., graduate of the National College (from The Mirror, 1941).

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 8: the first chapter of the "Junior NCA," forerunner of today's Student ACA organization, was established at the National College in 1941 and named in honor of the school's second president, William C. Schulze, M.D., D.C. (1870-1936).

Herb was already a shutter-bug when he arrived in Chicago, and found new outlets for his photographic talents. He served as staff photographer for his class yearbook, and the caption associated with his picture in the NCC's The Mirror for 1941, suggested that "Kodak is Herb's middle name." Today his modest home in the Leaside region of greater metropolitan Toronto is a veritable archive of slides, photographs, and minutes from the CMCC Board of Directors (now the Board of Governors), which he served as secretary for many years during the 1940s and 1950s.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 9: Student Lee dissecting at National College, 1938.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 10: Herb Lee at bat, Chicago, circa 1940.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 11: Graduation photo, National College of Chiropractic, 1941.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 12: Herb Lee (third from right, standing) gathers with classmates in this photo which appeared in the May 1941 issue of the National Chiropractic Journal (forerunner of today's Journal of the American Chiropractic Association).

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 13: From the commencement program for the National College of Chiropractic & Drugless Physicians, 1941.

image - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark

Figure 14: Philosopher of Chiropractic (Ph.C.) awarded to Dr. Lee by the National College in June 1941.


Click here for previous articles by Joseph Keating Jr., PhD.

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