Celebrated Icon Dr. Alfred Bove Passes

Dr. Bove gave the Lambertsen Lecture Lung Injury with Diving: Beyond Boyle’s Law as one of the ASM 2015 Keynote Speakers.

It is with great sadness that the UHMS and the diving medical field acknowledge and grieve for the recent loss of Alfred Bove, MD, PhD, who passed away on October 17 at the age of 81. Dr. Bove’s immeasurable contributions to our field, coupled with his generosity, kindness and wisdom make his loss profound. If you ever had the pleasure to speak with him, you couldn’t help but appreciate his humbleness and willingness to provide the benefit of his wisdom to anyone who asked.

A founding member of the American Board of Preventive Medicine UHM Examination Writing Subcommittee, Dr. Bove was responsible for establishing the UHM Board Certification process. During his time as President of the UHMS (1983-1984), he successfully changed the name of our Society from the Undersea Medical Society, to the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society, to better reflect the scope of hyperbaric medicine.

Dr. Bove also initiated the first International Symposium on Undersea and Hyperbaric Physiology and arranged to have the meeting held in Kobe, Japan. This meeting established the foundation for our strong ties with our Japanese colleagues, a relationship that continues to grow and from which our field is all the stronger.

Fred, as he was known, was a Renaissance man in every respect, with a fund of knowledge and logic able to address numerous areas of the field of medicine, and certainly diving medicine. He was the ‘go-to’ person for cardiac issues related to divers, always a source of common-sense advice.

He will be badly missed. Our hearts go out to his wife Sandy, his family, and to the many friends and colleagues who have lost a truly incredible person. His legacy remains, an enduring testament to his wisdom.

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In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American College of Cardiology Foundation at: or to Temple University to support the Alfred A. Bove,MD, PhD Lecture within the Heart and Vascular Institute, an annual event created as a tribute to Dr. Bove’s passion for educating and training generations of physicians. If you would like to donate to the latter, you may mail your contributions to Temple Health Institutional Advancement, c/o Katie Beddis, Post Office Box 827651, Philadelphia, PA 19182, or contribute online at:

Downunder Dive Pioneer Dr. Carl Edmonds Passes

Carl had an incisive intellect and accrued an encyclopedic knowledge of diving medicine.

Carl Edmonds, diving medicine pioneer, Foundation President of the South Pacific Underwater Medicine Society and first editor of the SPUMS Journal, has passed away.

He died on Friday, November 1, 2019, at age 83 looking out across the vast Pacific Ocean, an ocean that embraced him during countless dives and an ocean that inspired him to contribute immeasurably over 50 years of dedicated service to diving medicine, safety, and academia.

Carl’s output of publications during his working life was prodigious. He was author or co-author of many other aquatic/diving medical books and book chapters, including Marine Animal Injuries to Man (1984), The Abalone Diver (1987), Dangerous Marine Creatures (1989), and Diving Medicine for Scuba Divers (1992). Many of the classic diving medicine textbooks from the USA contain contributions from Carl Edmonds. His research papers covered many aspects of diving medicine, with topics ranging across nearly all aspects of diving medicine: fitness to dive, pearl and abalone diving, scuba kids, drowning, diving deaths, oxygen and recompression treatment, the science of dive medicine, long-term sequelae of diving, and dive equipment.

Carl’s iconic Diving and Subaquatic Medicine, co-authored with Christopher Lowry and John Pennefather, was self-published in 1976. Self-publication was necessary at the time because medical editors did not see a market for the book. Now in its 5th edition (2016), this authoritative reference is used by dive physicians all over the world. Regarded as a founding father of marine medicine Carl has influenced all contemporary generations of dive physicians.

In collaboration with Bob Thomas and Bart McKenzie, Carl published a subsequent book titled Diving Medicine for SCUBA Divers to ensure that the educational aspects of diving and subaquatic medicine became accessible to a wider audience. A revised online edition with John Pennefather has been made available for free download.

An obituary about Carl Edmonds is incomplete without describing his founding role in establishing the SPUMS, and the Society’s Journal. During his tenure at the Royal Australian Navy School of Underwater Medicine, informal discussions between Carl and his colleagues led to the creation of a medical society with a focus on matters significant to professional and recreational divers. SPUMS was founded in the wardroom of HMAS Penguin on Monday, May 3, 1971. Carl was elected as Founding President of SPUMS and held the position until 1976. The first SPUMS newsletter was produced by Carl as editor in May 1972, a hand-typed, 18-page document.

Later that year, Carl heralded the first Annual Scientific Meeting in 1972. The theme was “Diving Safety - What Not to Do!” Carl’s newsletter evolved into the highly respected and leading scientific journal, Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine. All divers today benefit from his dedication to improving the safety of the sport and occupation that he so loved.

Carl accumulated an extensive library of diving medical and marine texts. In June 2014 he arranged for his entire library to be transported to the Royal Hobart Hospital hyperbaric facility and is accessible for future generations.

Carl Edmonds’ contributions to the field of dive medicine were recognized by SPUMS in 1989 when he was awarded life membership. He has had numerous other awards during his career. including the Order of Australia Medal in 2008 in recognition of his service to diving and hyperbaric medicine as a practitioner, researcher, educator, and the advancement of dive safety.

His most recent research focus was scuba divers’ pulmonary edema, and he continued to work on several papers right to his death. He is survived by wife Cynthia, his children, Scott, Kirsten, Mark, Briony, and five granddaughters.

Carl’s life, ideas, literary papers, and books will continue to inspire, challenge and guide divers and diving doctors for many more generations to come. Carl will be sadly missed, but his influence lives on.

Joel Hissink, SPUMS Webmaster, formerly Officer-in-Charge SUMU, HMAS Penguin

David Smart, SPUMS President

Douglas Falconer, SPUMS Secretary, Senior Medical Advisor Diving Medicine, SUMU, HMAS Penguin

John Pennefather, formerly SUMU Scientific Officer, HMAS Penguin

Renowned Diving Doc Dr. Fiona Sharp Passes

The diving medical community recently lost Dr. Fiona Sharp. The anesthesiologist from Perth, Australia, died on October 17 while CCR diving off Bonaire – dying on the same day as Dr. Fred Bove.

A consummate attendee at diving medical meetings and workshops, and a diving medicine consultant for DAN Southeast Asia Pacific, Fiona was universally adored.

Her loss leaves a sizable void in the social and clinical fabric of our field. A consummate attendee at UHMS Annual Meetings, she has also been characterized by the EUBS executive committee as their most faithful Australian member, as well as a Member at Large from 2011-2014.

Fiona’s joyful, witty, and passionate personality enriched every meeting she attended. Her honesty, intelligence and lack of pretense were laudable attributes that made her contributions of great value and her company universally sought.

Her loss has caused a surge of remembrance on social media. If you take some time, you will get a measure of the person Fiona was, and how missed she will be.

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