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Ian Cochrane MBE and Marion Cochrane MBE - TLM Heroes

A smartly dressed couple stand with their MBE medals outside Buckingham Palace

Marion Cochrane (1928-2022) and Dr Ian Cochrane travelled to India in 1958 with The Leprosy Mission as their first posting and were there on and off for their whole working lives. Ian was a physician who did minor reconstructive surgery, and likely worked longer for the Mission than any other doctor. Marion started as a nurse but also ran a lot of training: training students and graduates in the paramedical side of leprosy, back when this was a big part of the Mission’s work. They were also involved in village health clinics and administration, and raised two children together: Murray and Hazel.

Ian and Marion worked in Bangladesh and Nepal at times during their careers – in 1980 they relocated to Bangladesh where Ian set up many community clinics and Marion worked as Sister-in-Charge at the Kamalganj Hospital. But they were based at Purulia Hospital for the majority of their time: after Ian died, Marion took his ashes to Purulia and he is buried there, alongside Eddie and Barbara Askew; and Anil and Kiran Das.

Ian and Marion were both awarded MBEs at Buckingham Palace in 1993 in recognition of their dedication to the cause, and their passion for integrating the treatment of leprosy into mainstream healthcare.