Peter Galpin is a plastic and reconstructive surgeon. He trained initially as a US Special Forces medic, master parachutist, and weapons expert, and completed four years of active duty service. During his tour of combat duty in Vietnam, he served as one of two Special Forces medics tasked with organizing and implementing the medical evacuation of Saigon when the country fell in 1975. He was responsible for the evacuation of tens of thousands of displaced persons. After discharge from the military, he undertook premedical studies in the US when he was struck by a drunk driver and paralyzed. He spent over eight months in hospital. He resumed his studies, and went on to complete medical school, general surgical residency, plastic surgery residency, burn and reconstructive fellowship, and hand and microvascular fellowship. To date, Dr. Galpin is the only surgeon in the world to complete medical school and surgical training as a paraplegic.
Dr. Galpin's professional interests are plastic and reconstructive surgery, and surgical care in developing countries. Domestically, he served as Chief of Staff of Maui Memorial Medical Center, Chair of the Department of Surgery at Maui Memorial Medical Center, Vice-President of the Hawaii Plastic Surgery Society, and Vice-President of the Hawaii Independent Physicians Association. Internationally, he served as trauma and plastic surgeon in Afghanistan, Laos, and Nepal. His civilian awards include the Maui County Commendation for services to medical care in the County, State of Hawaii Commendation for services to medical care in the State, and US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary's Highest Recognition Award for outstanding contributions to local, national, and international medical care.