The second visit to NIH by President Lyndon B. Johnson occurred in August, 1967. All the institute directors were assembled
in the Board Room of the Clinical Center waiting for the President to arrive. He had canceled the visit earlier and on this
day there was great uncertainty that he would arrive. (For one of us, who had been summoned back from a vacation in Switzerland
on the orders of NIH Director Dr. Shannon, the trip seemed particularly futile.) Suddenly it was reported that the President
had landed in a helicopter on the circle of grass before the Clinical Center. Secret Service men soon arrived in the Board
Room, bearing first a chair, and then a carafe of water. The President was not far behind them. He had brought with him
John W. Gardner, Secretary of DHEW, William H. Stewart, the Surgeon General, Philip R. Lee, Assistant Secretary for Health,
and Douglas Cater of the White House staff. The President had recently made a speech relative to the battles in Vietnam that
he wanted "the raccoon skin pinned on the wall." His message to the assembled institute directors was the same; he
felt that inventions and products in the laboratories were not being diligently applied to healing and curing the sick. Several
of us were designated to give presentations of our efforts and others responded to numerous presidential questions concerning
various illnesses of interest to him.
Visible around the table from left to right: Donald S. Fredrickson, Director of the National Heart Institute; James A. Shannon,
Director of NIH; Gerald D. LaVeck, Director, National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; Surgeon General Stewart;
Donald Whedon, Director National Institute of Arthritis and Metabolic Diseases; Secretary Gardner; the President, Philip Lee;
Douglas Cater; and Dorland Davis, Director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.