For the past 75 years, my family has been involved in the practice of surgery in the small southwest Mississippi town of Centreville, located some 50 miles north of Baton Rouge, La.
In that time, we've not only been blessed with the opportunity to care for many dear friends and neighbors throughout our region, but we've also learned firsthand the challenges and benefits of surgical practice in rural America.
Having trained for 2 years under the renowned Dr Rudolph Matas, my father, Dr Richard Jennings Field, Sr, was offered a position on the surgical faculty at Tulane University. After completing his surgical residency at Tulane in 1922, Dad surprised many of his colleagues and friends by returning to his hometown of Centreville to practice. He opened a second-floor office above the Centreville Drug Store, performing mostly minor surgeries while transporting the more serious cases by train to hospitals in Baton Rouge.