When Dr. Brian Roebuck opened his practice in 1987, his sign-in ledger was a simple composition book commonly seen in high school and college writing classes. The first patient signed in on December 9, 1987, and Delia Gagliardi signed the ledger the next day.
Also a patient, Delia’s husband lived to be 94. He always greeted Dr. Roebuck as “Friend.”
Dr. Roebuck recently found his original sign-in book while moving, “I was going over items that I didn’t need to keep, and I said, ‘No, I need to keep this first sign-in book.’ Glancing through his 31-year-old book of original patients, he saw two names that are still his patients today.
Emil Vogler first came to see Dr. Roebuck on February 24, 1988. Emil, a World War II Veteran serviced planes of the era, of which Dr. Roebuck is a huge fan. Emil and several of his Veteran cohorts have signed Dr. Roebuck’s enormous book of WWII aircraft. Dr. Roebuck looks over the names, and points to one who died recently, “He was in his mid-90s,” Dr. Roebuck recalled.
Medicine is more than a business to Dr. Roebuck.
“This is a privilege, actually, it’s like living history. My parents are from Europe, so I have a different take on medicine.” Providing care for his patients and training for medical students, Dr. Roebuck said, “It’s a privilege to be a physician … where you actually get into somebody’s life and family, and you can markedly change the direction of their life … that’s kind of awesome, kind of scary and a big responsibility.”
Dr. Roebuck mentioned that March 29 is celebrated around the country as Doctor’s Day. “What better way of celebrating Doctor’s Day than to say ‘thank you’ to your patients?”