Who Was Tom Dooley?

Prologue: Dr Tom Dooley was a very effective communicator and listener in different languages (through interpreters as needed), and was able to establish trust by incorporating the patient's world view and current methods into his approach.


Dr Tom Dooley talks about the formation of MEDICO. Tom describes the involvement of Dr Albert Schweitzer, and Dr Peter Commanduras.


Chapter One: It is a good idea to calculate Thomas A Dooley, Sr's wealth in simple terms. Envision the railroad making car company Thomas A Dooley built over 50 years at a time when railroad cars sold like hotcakes. The St Louis papers called it one of the largest industrial concerns in St Louis.


Chapter Two: Dr Tom Dooley was actually Thomas A Dooley III. The story begins with Thomas A Dooley Sr., Dr Tom's grandfather. His story is best told above in Chapter One and in this chapter you see the utter opulence of his Golden Jubilee dinner. If they can throw a party like this, there's pretty much nothing that they can't buy. This wealth benefited Dr Tom Dooley in his youth as not many people can imagine. Dr Tom was a world traveller before he was 21.


Chapter Three: Tom's early life and education.


Chapter 4: Tom plays the piano at Larry Aggens home in approximately October 1959. A reporter named Lucy brought Tom to Wilmette and Larry showed the films of Operation Freedom lift and recorded the audio on tape. Larry and Tom are showing the film and the audio picks up their explanation. He says at the beginning of this clip that he heard this song on the radio, bought the sheet music and therefore was playing it for the first time. Lucille Sensor, secretary to Mrs Agnes Dooley, Tom's mom, says that Tom read music before he read the newspaper. So go ahead, enjoy this piece, listen to Tom, he was being taped in Wilmette, IL by his shipmate Larry Aggens. Some people thought Tom exaggerated his talents, you tell me, can Tom play the piano?


Chapter 5: Later that same year he was on What's My Line, November 22, 1959. What's My Line is the second longest running show of it type in TV history. At this point he is now known as "The Splendid American," "Dr America," and "Bac My Sy," as well as Dr Tom Dooley.


Chapter 6: Tom was called by the New York Times one of the first examples of a "celebrity saint." Tom shot these videos without sound, which was all you could do in those days, and here the narrator tells you what you are seeing in his films, this one from Vietnam, 1954. This is the American quarters during Operation Freedom Lift, where they were living like the French colonialists, and then Tom shows the An Lac Orphanage, and Madame Vu Ngai, the founder of An Lac Orphanage. The orphanage shown here is in North Vietnam, but the children were later moved to South Vietnam. At the Fall of Saigon, approximately 100 children were flown to the US with Madame Ngai, and Betty Tisdale of Seattle Washington was the American who coordinated it all in the US. All the children here were adopted by American families. In 2011, they had all grown to have their own families, and they had a reunion.


Chapter 7: Take another listen to Tom's piano playing. Tom plays the piano at Larry Aggens home in approximately October 1959. The Song here is Somewhere Over the Rainbow.


Chapter 8: Tom shows his first hospital and setup in Laos, at Vang Vieng. He creates signs that function like titles. Notice he lists Norman Baker, Dennis Shepard, and Peter Kessey. These were his three corpsman in North Vietnam and again in Laos. All served for two years before returning stateside.


Chapter 9: For now we will end with Tom playing again as taped by his shipmate, Larry Aggens, at Larry's home in Wilmette, IL. It's an hour north of Chicago by car. Tom plays the piano at Larry Aggens home in approximately October 1959. The Song here is Que sera sera. But for you fans who have made it this far, there is more in the pipeline.