John Robertson Raeside M.B. Ch.B. M.F.Hom (20 August 1926 – 18 June 1972), was a Scottish homeopath working at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital. He was one of sixteen homeopaths who died in the Staines Trident air disaster in June, 1972.

Homeopaths and homeopathic supporters including Isabel Campbell, Dudley Wooton Everitt, Marjorie Golomb, Elizabeth Sharp Hawthorn, Sergei William Kadleigh, sisters Kawther Theresa Kandalla and Ludi Marylone Kandalla, Joan Mackover, Mary Stevenson, Elizabeth Somerville Stewart and Thomas Fergus Stewart also died in that fatal crash.

John Robertson Raeside was an assistant to Marjorie Blackie at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital, and he taught David Lilley. Raeside was also a close friend of Llewelyn Ralph Twentyman, and together they introduced an anthroposophical medical approach to the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital. After Raeside’s tragic death, in 1979, Llewelyn Ralph Twentyman married his widow Anneli Raeside.

John Robertson Raeside practiced at Crenelle, Hillhead Rd, Bieldside, Aberdeenshire.

John Robertson Raeside was a leading prover of homeopathic remedies, of note:

  • Penicillinum (BHJ 1947 & 1962)
  • Hydrophis cyanocinctus (BHJ 45 1956)
  • A Proving of Triosteum (BHJ 49:4, Oct 1960, pp.269-78)
  • A Proving of Selenium (BHJ 50:4, Oct 1961, pp.215-25)
  • A Review of Recent Provings (BHJ LI 1962, pp.188-96)
  • Venus mercenaria (BHJ 51 1961)
  • Hirudo medicinalis (BHJ 53:1964, p.22)
  • A Proving of Mandragora officinarum (BHJ, 55, 1966)
  • A Proving of Colchicum (BHJ 56:2, 1967 pp.86-93)
  • Tellurium (BHJ 57:4, 1968, pp.216-20)
  • A Proving of Flor De Piedra (Lophophytum leandri) (BHJ 58:4 1969, pp.240-246)
  • A Proving of Mimosa pudica (BHJ 60:2, 1971, pp.97-104).

John Robertson Raeside’s Obituary was provided by Dr. Llewelyn Ralph Twentyman in the British Homeopathic Journal vol. 61, no. 4. (October, 1972), page 249-50:

Dr. John Raeside, S.H.M.O. to the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital, died in the Trident air disaster at Heathrow on 18 June. He was 45.

John Raeside was born in Glasgow on 20 August 1926. He was the second of three brothers and spent his childhood at Troon in Ayrshire. He was educated at Marr College, Troon, and studied medicine at Glasgow University, graduating in 1949. After a hospital appointment for one year in Glasgow he served as R.M.O. in the army, first in Germany and then in Korea. After leaving the army he spent a year in the Camphill Schools for handicapped children at Aberdeen. There he studied under Dr. Karl König, the founder of the schools, and gained the basis for his developing interest in the philosophy and work of Rudolf Steiner. There also he met and married his wife, Anneli.

He then spent a year, from 1953 to 1954, as House Physician at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital, and subsequently worked as Trainee Assistant with Dr. T. Fergus Stewart in Glasgow. They were together again at the time of their death whilst leaving for the International Homoeopathic Congress in Brussels, and they had remained friends during the intervening years. John Raeside then worked for a year as assistant to Dr. Lees in his homoeopathic practice in Aberdeen, and during this time he was able to renew his medical work in the Camphill Schools.

Leaving Scotland in 1956, he became assistant to Dr. Margery Blackie and clinical assistant at the Royal London Homoeopathic Hospital. In due course he was able to establish his own private practice in homoeopathic medicine.

In 1958 he was appointed S.H.M.O. to the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital.

He played an active part in the activities of the Faculty of Homoeopathy, becoming Hon. Secretary and also undertaking an annual programme of homoeopathic drug provings. He was on his way to Brussels to read a paper on this extensive work to the Research Committee of the International Homoeopathic League when he was killed in the tragic air disaster at Heathrow.

He is survived by his wife and daughter and three sons.

John Raeside was very much a Scot, with the humanity and humour and concern for truth which characterize them. The moving enthusiasm in him was undoubtedly for the philosophy and work of Rudolf Steiner and he felt strongly that, from this source, impulse and enlightenment for the future development of Homoeopathy was possible. He was naturally choleric, with the tenacity and energy of this temperament, and in discussion and argument could be forthright to the point of bluntness. But he was always accessible to reason and his whole being would expand with delight when he grasped some new and different aspect of a problem. With patients he manifested a quite different side to his character, patient, sympathetic, willing to listen, willing to enter into their problems fully and constructively, a friend and counsellor. Innumerable have been the tributes from his patients, full of gratitude for his help and willingness to try and help when all else had failed. He felt that the true impulse in a doctor is the impulse to bring healing activity to the sufferer and that science has a place in medicine only in so far as it increases the therapeutic insight and zeal of the physician. He often emphasized that it is within the homoeopathic tradition and movement that the idea and reality of healing has a central place and that it is this which so distinguishes it from orthodox scientific medicine which really has no concept of the healing forces.

Apart from medicine he had a wide range of interests, from the pursuit of ancient stone circles to music. He loved children and became with them a child again, entering into all the fun of their games, and he obviously enjoyed to the full the responsibilities of his own family.

My own friendship with him ripened over the years and we found a complementariness in our respective temperaments and talents which, apart from the pleasure of working together, also on occasion gave rise to the discovery of new insights barred to either of us singly.

His death is a personal loss to all of us who knew him, but most especially to his children and wife. The greatest mark of our sympathy will be in the efforts of all of us who remain to see to it that the ideals of John and those who died with him are carried on and taken further.

Memorial Address, given by Dr. Llewelyn Ralph Twentyman, at the Memorial Service commemorating those who died in the aircraft disaster. Held at the church of St. George the Martyr, Queen Square, London W.C.1, on Thursday, 29 June, 1972. Printed in the British Homeopathic Journal vol. 61, no. 3 (July, 1972), pages 130-133:

And then, JOHN RAESIDE who was my friend, personal and close and we had worked together for many years. I have seldom met anyone with greater determination to reach the truth – not the truth in the skies but the truth about any problem he had to grapple with; and I think all of us who remember him know of this capacity for grappling which he had. He would argue, he would – like the good Scotsman he was – reject, until he had understood what was meant, until persuasion, and argument and imagination had succeeded in overcoming and bridging the gulf from one person to another, until understanding had flowed of what was being said. Then, when once John had understood I have seldom, if ever, known anyone of such generous appreciation; it would well up like a sun to shine on whoever had contributed that new spark of understanding and piece of truth. Many, many of us have learned to appreciate this core of gold within his good ancestral Scottish rugged exterior. All of us who know the Scots – and we have many from Scotland – have learned to treasure their quality. His contribution was in many things. He never held back from service, he never held back from taking on new responsibilities when they were thrust upon him.