Born in Portland, Oregon, the son of a medical missionary, he spent the first fifteen years of his life in China.
He graduated from the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Medicine in 1922. In 1923, he was appointed a medical missionary to Henan, China and served until 1948. He was the only medical missionary in India and China who was able to provide radium treatment for cancer. He was also on the staff of the Church Missionary Society Hospital at Gaza, Palestine.