Albert Henry Bridgman ’49

Albert Henry Bridgman ’49 passed peacefully into God’s keeping March 1, 2012. Bridgman had several lifetimes of experience marked by faith and adventurous perseverance. The fourth of seven children, Bridgman was born in Canada to Presbyterian missionaries Eleanor and Harold Bridgman. The Bridgmans were on furlough when he was born and soon returned to the mission field in China, where he would remain for much of his youth. During WWII, Bridgman and his family were evacuated on the USS Washington. This was the first time he would call the mountains of Western North Carolina home. Bridgman joined his brother, Jack Bridgman, at Davidson. He earned a master’s degree in zoology from Louisiana State University, after which he attended LSU School of Medicine. After medical school, he completed his surgical residency through Tulane University at Charity Hospital in New Orleans, La. Bridgman was part of the doctor’s draft and was appointed officer in charge of the Cape Hallett Station south of the Arctic Circle during Operation Deep Freeze in the International Geophysical Year. Bridgman treasured this time of challenge and comradery for the rest of his life. During this long winter, a National Geographic topographer named a glacier after him that remains on maps to this day. Not long after his return from the Antarctic, Bridgman joined his powerful lineage of missionary work and served at Kwangju Christian Hospital in South Korea training Korean surgeons. After this chapter of his life, he returned to the mountains of Western North Carolina and worked at the VA Medical Center in Asheville. One of the greatest rewards he had was training advanced surgical residents. It was also at the VA that he met his dearly beloved wife, Ann. Throughout his life, Bridgman was a faithful servant of Christ, who celebrated the gifts of his Creator. With excellence and humility, he was an esteemed surgeon, a daring aerobatic pilot, and an enthusiastic sailor. Into the last days of his life, he enjoyed music, singing, and painting. Bridgman was preceded in death by his loving parents and his brothers, Arthur, Tommy, and Jack Bridgman ’49. He is survived by his devoted wife, Ann, 57 Last Resort Rd., Black Mountain, NC 28711; his daughter, Katie; his brothers, Stewart ’58 and David ’54; and his sister, Eleanor.