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Finding Aid of the Robert R. Secrest, Sr. Oral History

Identifier: HHC 200

Scope and Content

This interview with Dr. Robert R. Secrest, Sr., (1924-2002), a retired internist living in Peralta, New Mexico, focuses on his nearly three decades' service in New Mexico as an internist specializing in gastroenterology. For twenty years Dr. Secrest practiced at Lovelace Clinic, where, among other things, he played an important role in the astronaut testing program of the early 1960s. Among the subjects discussed in this interview are Dr. Secrest's personal and professional backgrounds; his Korean War service at Walker Air Force Base, New Mexico; his years at the Lovelace Clinic with special attention to the astronaut testing program; and the major figures of the Clinic between the mid-1950s and the early eighties.


  • 1996
  • Majority of material found within 1996

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of print materials allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Biography / History

Robert Rae Secrest, Sr. was born in Portsmouth, Ohio October 31, 1924. He attended Miami University (Ohio) as a premed student. He received his medical degree from University of Cincinnati in 1948 and completed his residency at Medical College of Virginia. He was an Air Force flight surgeon during the Korean Conflict. When Dr. Secrest left the military, he worked at Albuquerque's Veterans Administration Hospital and then opened his own practice in the city. Dr. Secrest worked for Lovelace Clinic from 1956 to 1974. While at Lovelace, he was part of the medical team that gave physicals to the original Mercury astronauts. Dr. Secrest completed a fellowship in gastroenterology in 1977 and joined the faculty at Texas Tech University School of Medicine in Lubbock, Texas. From 1981 to 1986, he had a private practice in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He retired to Peralta, New Mexico in 1986. Dr. Secrest died on October 29, 2002.


1 folder, 1 audio cassette


This oral history documents the professional life of Robert Rae Secrest, Sr., a gastroenterologist who practiced at Lovelace Clinic in Albuquerque, New Mexico for twenty years.

Processing Information

The materials were processed by Janet Johnson.
Finding Aid of the Robert R. Secrest, Sr. Oral History, 1996
Edited Full Draft
Peggy McBride
© 2007
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Health Sciences Library and Informatics Center Repository

MSC09 5100 , NM P: 505.272.9896
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque New Mexico 87131 United States