Dr. Alfred Rives Shands Jr., 82, an internationally known orthopedic surgeon who was the principal founder of the Alfred L. duPont Institute, died Monday at his home in Cokesbury Village, Del., after a stroke.
An authority on the correction of bone deformities in children, Dr. Shands was asked by duPont's widow to organize the staff and serve as director of the institute, which was established in 1940 for the care and treatment of curable crippled children. He remained as director until his retirement in 1969, when he was named director emeritus. He and his staff received the Gold Medal of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons in 1952 for the research and development of new techniques.
A native Washington, Dr. Shands was the son of a professor of orthopedic surgery at George Washington University. He earned bachelor's and medical degrees from the University of Virginia and served as an intern and orthopedic resident at Johns Hopkins Hospital.
He taught at George Washington University's medical school and was an associate professor of surgery in charge of orthopedics at Duke University for several years before beginning his work with the institute in 1937.
In World War II, he was a senior orthopedic consultant with the Army Air Corps with the rank of colonel. He later became chief of the surgical branch of the Air Surgeon's Office and was awarded the Legion of Merit.
From 1945 to 1950, he served as a special consultant in surgery for the Defense Department.
He wrote more than 250 papers on orthopedic and military medicine and was the author of a textbook on orthopedic surgery that is still in use.
Survivors include his wife, the former Elizabeth Prewitt, of Cokesbury Village; a son, the Rev. Alfred R. III, of Louisville, Ky.; a sister, Agnus H. Shands of Washington, and three grandchildren.