- Rebecca Wallersteiner
- London, UK
Edwin “Malcolm” Symonds was born in Adelaide, Australia, to Edwin Joseph Symonds, an engineer who helped develop telecommunications in southern Australia, and Eugenie Mary (née Walker), a schoolteacher. Symonds enjoyed a happy childhood. He was educated in a class of high achievers at St Peter’s College Adelaide, noted for three Nobel laureates among its alumni. He shone in both academic subjects and sports. At school, he developed a lifelong love of cricket and played on the school cricket team.
Symonds studied medicine at the University of Adelaide and later chose to specialise in obstetrics and gynaecology. Even though much of his later career would be in England, he maintained lifelong professional links with Australia, and since 2002 was visiting professor in the department of obstetrics and gynaecology at the University of Adelaide.
Although later in life Symonds was very outgoing and had many leadership roles, he was a shy young man and lived at home while at university. He met his future first wife, Sue Martin, after she and her parents moved to the same street as his father’s family. Both were students at the University of Adelaide (Sue was studying pharmacy). Apart from an interest in health and science, both were …