According to Surgeon General Richard H. Carmona, Surgeon General
Luther Terry Luther Leonidas Terry was a smoker ?until he started work
on his Smoking Report.?
?The Office of the Surgeon General has a long history in exposing the
risks of tobacco use. In 1964, Surgeon General Luther Terry issued
the groundbreaking Report on smoking and health. The key job of the
Surgeon General is to protect and maintain the health of the American
people, and Surgeon General Terry knew that to meet that obligation,
he would have to call for a fundamental change in how our country
viewed tobacco at the time. Dr. Terry also knew that by issuing the
results of the research available to him at the time ? research that
showed causality between smoking and three diseases ? he was taking
aim at one of the pervasive symbols of American life ?the cigarette.
In 1964, more than 42% of Americans smoked. As a matter of fact,
until he started work on his smoking Report, the Surgeon General
himself was a smoker.?
Remarks as prepared;
Vice Admiral Richard H. Carmona, M.D., M.P.H, FACS
United States Surgeon General
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Launch of Report of the Surgeon General
National Press Club
Thursday, May 27, 2004, 1:00 p.m.
"The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General, 2004"
According to an article in the NIH Record, the biweekly newsletter for
employees of the National Institutes of Health, Dr. Luther Terry was a
smoker and he quit smoking in 1964.
?Back in 1964, Dr. Luther Terry, then U.S. surgeon general, was
understandably a bit nervous. He was about to release the first-ever
Surgeon General's Report, which confirmed several long-suspected
theories regarding the detrimental effect of smoking on health. As he
was riding to the news conference, thinking about what he would say,
he lit up a cigarette. Noting the cigarette, an adviser, who knew
Terry was a chronic smoker, suggested that the surgeon general be
prepared for the first question reporters were certain to ask: Do you
smoke, Dr. Terry? Terry could not believe reporters would be
interested in his personal habits. Sure enough, though, following
Terry's announcement of the landmark SG report and his comments about
the health dangers of smoking, a savvy reporter asked Terry if he
smoked. "No," Terry replied. The reporter ? convinced he had done his
homework ? double-checked his notes. Knowing Terry's history, the
writer pressed further, "Dr. Terry, when did you quit?" A smiling
Terry responded, "About 30 minutes ago." He never smoked again.?
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
NIH Record from April 17, 2001
Search terms used:
Luther Terry surgeon general smoker
I hope the information provided is helpful!