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Nora Philip Fry - Naja


Nora Philip Fry was born in Dundee but moved to Aberdeen some years later with her parents and was educated at Hilton Academy.

She trained as a nurse in Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Her Aberdeen nurse training was at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary where she qualified as a paediatric nurse in the Royal Aberdeen Children's Hospital. She moved to Edinburgh where she trained as a general nurse. Then she returned to Aberdeen to train as a midwife at Aberdeen Maternity Hospital.

Nora Philip Fry In Canada

After qualifying she moved to Canada where in 1964 she worked in the Toronto Hospital.

In 1965 she became a Federal Government employee and then spent 24 years working with North American Indians and Inuit tribes in isolated communities as a Nurse. She worked in six different reservations as well as working with the Inuit in the High Arctic. Tribes included the Sioux, Blackfoot and Cree.

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Nora Fry was given the honour of having a name bestowed on her by a native elder. This was Iikiinapaki by the Native Americans which means Gentle Woman.

Her nursing career wasn't as average as that of most nurses - Nora often worked in areas populated by seals and polar bears and was Canada's most northerly situated nurse. Visiting patients often involved long journeys travelling across the frozen sea by skidoo and sled.

These isolated areas tested Nora's resolve and nursing skills where she often worked in isolation without medical or fellow nursing support. Her job included general nursing, dentistry, delivering babies, immunising the population, treating illnesses and diseases and emergency care of the population.

In 1989 Nora Philip Fry took a new role in Calgary as a public health administrator. She met her husband, Arthur, a school administrator from Ontario. They moved to the Rocky mountains when they retired.

In 2003 Nora Philip Fry returned to Scotland and settled in Stonehaven with her husband Arthur Fry.

She wrote her first book, which is called Naja, based on her experiences. Naja is the native word for nurse. This true story describes the hardships faced by other cultures with their belief systems in a modern world. Nora Philip Fry narrates the rigorous life she faced whilst living and working as a non Inuit in a society that lacked the conveniences of everyday life. During this time Nora Philip Fry met famous people, slept in an igloo, travelled by dog team, panned for gold and was presumed missing as she bobbed on a lake overnight in an aircraft.

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In July 2007 Nora Fry returned to Canada and met Archie Lucas, a man she saved in 1967. He was born premature and with a serious lung infection. Local doctors thought he would die but the intensive nursing care of Nora Fry saved him from certain death. Archie was now working as a fur trapper at Whitehorse on North West Canada. Nora showed him a photograph of him as a baby, something he had never seen.

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