ICA Pays Tribute to the Legal Lion – George McAndrews

By Beth Clay

Falls Church, VA (April 11, 2023). The International Chiropractors Association (ICA) pays tribute to George Pellegrin McAndrews as we mourn his passing. According to the obituary available on line at Legacy, Mr. McAndrews passed away peacefully on Good Friday. Married to his wife Katharine for 59 years, “Papa George” as his family called him had five children, 21 grandchildren and five great grandchildren.

The son of a chiropractor (Dr. Patrick McAndrews), he was an All-State basketball player in high school and state champion on track and field. He went on to study mechanical engineering at the University of Notre Dame and earned a BSME with honors and winning the award of Engineer of the Year.

George would delay his education to serve two years in the Navy with his brother Tom, and as part of his deployment participated in Operation Redwing, a series of 17 nuclear detonations conducted in the South Pacific. With thousands of other military personnel, George and Tom were later officially designated “Atomic Veterans” for the unique nature of their service. George later enrolled at Notre Dame Law School, where he served as editor-in-chief of the Law Review and Chairman of the National Council of Law Review Editors. Upon graduation, he served for two years as a law clerk to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Over the course of his 55 year career as a trial attorney, Mr. McAndrews built a strong and successful record. Were it not for his legal prowess, the attempt to completely destroy the chiropractic profession might have been successful. Mr. McAndrews served as lead counsel almost two decades long landmark antitrust case, Wilk, et al. v. AMA, et al. The case which had many twists and turns, ended in the favor of chiropractic in large part because of George McAndrews. As lead attorney, he is credited with saving the chiropractic profession.

At the conclusion of the protracted legal battle, District Judge Getzendanner summarized her findings with the following, “The AMA and its officials, including Dr. Sammons, instituted a boycott of chiropractors in the mid-1960s by informing AMA members that chiropractors were unscientific practitioners and that it was unethical for a medical physician to associate with chiropractors. The purpose of the boycott was to contain and eliminate the chiropractic profession. This conduct constituted a conspiracy among the AMA and its members and an unreasonable restraint of trade in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act.

The AMA sought to spread the boycott to other medical societies… The plaintiffs are entitled to injunctive relief against the AMA…” https://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp/671/1465/2595129/

As we pay tribute to this legal lion, let us also remember that the work is not done. We are still, decades later weeding out the institutionalized bias discrimination against chiropractors and their patients in federal programs, policies and laws as a result of the AMA doctors who used their influence to restrain chiropractic over 50 years ago. The ICA with your help will continue this good fight.


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