We’re thrilled to be talking to Harry Chapman from Louis Kraft's, The Discovery. It is a pleasure to have him with us today at Pimp That Character!
Thank you for your interview, Harry Chapman. What do you do for a living?
I’m a physician in private practice. During my tenure at the Westside Hospital in Los Angeles I served as chief of obstetrics and gynecology twice. During that time—a little over twenty-four years—I delivered over 5,000 babies. That ended a year ago and now I only practice gynecology. My office is in West Los Angeles. … Oh, I’m also a full professor at USC.
Where do you go when you are angry?
I go to my 50-foot yacht, The Newborn, whenever I’m angry, stressed, or need to relax. The Newborn is docked at Marina del Rey in LA County. I don’t go for a voyage; instead I kick back, enjoy some vodka, and talk away the evening with a good friend or my sons.
What makes you laugh out loud?
Sid Shapiro. He’s a top-notch lawyer who has a mischievous tongue. By that I mean, his mind is sharp and that he takes no prisoners with his humorous barbs.
What is your greatest fear?
Losing my practice, my wealth, and my radiant and stunning wife, Helen. I don’t know what I would do without her.
Do you think the author portrayed you accurately?
Yes, … yes he has although at times he has been too truthful. He shared things about me to the world, things that people shouldn’t know. When I read some of what he wrote I felt like driving to his house and giving him a piece of my mind. I didn’t, but who knows maybe some day I will.
What is your idea of a perfect day?
Spending time with Helen and my sons and their families on the Newborn. I don’t mean in the harbor, but on a cruise to Catalina Island where we’d live onboard while enjoying the city of Avalon.
Are you a loner or do you prefer to surround yourself with friends?
I wouldn’t call myself a loner as I do have friends, but I don’t socialize often. When I do most of my time is spent with Helen and our sons and their families; or with Helen and Sid Shapiro and his wife.
Who is your best friend?
You should have guessed by now. It’s Sid Shapiro. He’s a big-time lawyer. We hit it off the moment we met in November 1960 when he was one of the members of the Beverlychrest Country Club in West Los Angeles who interviewed me when I applied to become a member. He’s funny, caring, and always has my back. I’m lucky to know him.
If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what would you do today?
I’d spend all my remaining time making love to Helen.
Louis Kraft, Co-Author The Discovery
Meet the Author
Author/historian Louis Kraft has focused his energy on producing work that highlights racism and the human experience of people who have put their lives on the line to prevent war. He has written articles for magazines, including Research Review and Wild West, as well as fiction (The Final Showdown) and nonfiction (Gatewood & Geronimo) books. Kraft returned to fiction writing when he collaborated with Robert S. Goodman on The Discovery.
Visit his website at www.readthediscovery.com.
About the Book:
In THE DISCOVERY by Robert S. Goodman and Louis Kraft, a young obstetrician/gynecologist delivers a premature baby after attending a dinner party. The child survives the delivery, but complications lead to a malpractice lawsuit two decades later.
In 1952, a pregnant seventeen-year-old gives birth in a Los Angeles hospital. Two nurses attend to the young woman while they wait for the doctor on call to arrive for the delivery. Dr. Harry Chapman arrives at the hospital clearheaded but with alcohol on his breath. The premature baby is born blue and placed in an incubator. The nurses turn the oxygen to the level recommended to pediatricians for preemies the year before to prevent blindness. When the baby’s color doesn’t change, Harry instructs the nurses to turn the oxygen up to maximum. They protest, but Harry insists that the nurses comply to save the baby from brain damage or death.
In 1972, Greg Weston, a twenty-year-old paralegal meets a young woman who works with a renowned pediatrician. When she questions the attractive young man about his blindness, Greg reveals that his adoptive parents told him he was born blind. After agreeing to see the doctor Gail works for, Greg becomes aware that his blindness may have occurred as a result of physician error. Greg requests his medical records from the hospital and the adoption agency, and he finds that the hospital records tell a different story about what took place after his birth. In both records, Dr. Harry Chapman is indicated as the doctor who delivered him. Greg shares his findings with a partner in his law firm, and they build a case against Dr. Chapman based on fraudulent changes in the hospital records, which allows the statute of limitations to be thrown out.
After Harry receives word that he is being sued, his attorney advises him that the malpractice insurance he carried in 1952 will not cover even a fraction of the multimillion-dollar lawsuit. The stress and uncertainty of the case, along with the accusation of fraud, breaks Harry, leading him down a road of depression and alcohol dependence. As Harry’s wife, Helen, watches her husband deteriorate, she makes an unthinkable choice to put an end to the plaintiff’s case.
In THE DISCOVERY, the authors connect the lives of two individuals across two decades, exposing vulnerabilities, bitterness, and frailties. As the case moves forward, a key witness’s testimony alters the lives of both men.
In writing THE DISCOVERY, Goodman and Kraft’s intentions were to offer readers multidimensional characters with real-world problems and to bring awareness to the severe affect malpractice lawsuits can have on physicians’ professional and personal lives.
The Discovery is available at Amazon.