Doctor Raymond Grandon (MD) is 96 years old and continues to actively practice medicine in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania – U.S. At the end of 2015 he will be retiring, but before that here’s a look at the years he spent as a medico and the impact he had as a doctor, teacher and leader.

On Feb 19, 1961 Dr. Grandon was featured in a local newspaper the Sunday Patriot-News which recorded his schedule as ‘punishing’ and ‘highly obligated’ to patient care. The newspaper even went on to suggest that such overwork might lead to an early death!

The writer of that article is long gone but Dr. Grandon at 96 continues to care for his patients at 131 State Street in Harrisburg, PA.

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But time has finally caugt up with Dr. Grandon and he is closing his practice by the end of this year.

Dr. Grandon, an MD in internal medicine who specialized in heart disease doesn’t want to retire. He keeps up with medical updates and enjoys interacting with people. But, his own health is no longer as reliable as it was before and with changing technology and a lack of electronic patient records are signals that its time for him to finally stop.

One of his patients, John Ryan (79) of Harrisburg has been his patient for 30 years. Dr. Grandon’s pending retirement has put a thought into his mind that he never considered – finding a new doctor. He compares his relationship to his doctor to that of ‘a marriage’. One of those things that never ends, lasts forver.


Ryan’s apprehension to switch to a younger doctor is based on his belief that an older doctor could understand an older patient better.

Doctor Raymond ‘All-Rounder’ Grandon

At 10 a.m. Dr. Grandon arrives at his office with a schedule full of patients for the day. By late afternoon, he is at a nursing home where he sees patients till 10 p.m. This is his schedule on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Grandon has been a native of Pennsylvania all his life. He went to Dickinson College and graduated from Jefferson Medical College – Philadelphia in 1945. On of his most notable accomplishments was organizing a televised heart surgery in the mid 1950s.

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He even taught other doctors and nurses, has held state and national level leadership positions and was even the President of the Pennsylvania Medical Society. His continued financial contribution to the health policy at his alma mater Jefferson has impacted the lives of many in the local community.

Dr. Grandon has been busy. So busy that over the last 15-20 years he hasn’t had time to stop and update his own CV ! A problem with one of his eyes stopped him from driving and now his sons driving him from home to his clinic and the nursing home.

His office manager Michele Underkoffler came to work for him in 1981, when he was in his 60s. She didn’t expect to work long, considering Dr. Grandon’s age but she underestimated him! Back then he had a partner and they saw patients from 8 a.m to 6 or 7 p.m. Michele got married and decided she wanted a shorter schedule and went to work for another doctor, but that experience was shortlived as the doctor was rude and unpleasent. She came back to work for Dr. Grandon who rarely rasies his voice. She believes the key to his long life is his regular teaching and medical conference schedule that keeps his brain going and body actively moving.

His son Ray Jr. seconds this opinion about his father’s long life by saying that he spends a lot of free time teaching about medical subjects. His wife Doris (93) has been along his side the entire time and she too leads an active and healthy lifestyle. At times even driving her friends to the market.

Back in Time

Dr. Grandon’s office has dated furniture – wooden chairs and panelled walls in the waiting room, which have an in-wall intercom and comfortable warmn carpeting.

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Another aspect of his practice is the time he spends with each patients – roughly 30 minutes each. His staff says this helps him understand the patients ‘non-medical’ background and see if those have any impact on their health. Knowing everything about his patients, Dr. Grandon’s patients then find it really hard to disconnect and go to another doctor who may not spend this much time with them.

Even as Dr. Raymond Grandon retires at the end of the year, the years of his life as a doctor is a gift to his patients, fellow doctors, students, nurses and all those who learnt from him. His life in itself is a motivation, even as he continues to have the drive and urge to continue practice even at the ripe age of 96! May this inspire ‘you’ good doctor to work towards healing people, inspiring many and being a shining light in your community!

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