Dr. Bill Morgan practices in the Chiropractic Department at the National Naval Medical Center (NNMC) in Bethesda, Maryland, where he works with injured service members returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as other servicemen and women with conditions that chiropractic can help. He has served at Bethesda since 1998. As part of his official duties, he was selected to provide chiropractic care to our nation's leaders, including Congress and the Supreme Court, in government health clinics in Washington, DC.
Dr. Morgan grew up in California and enlisted in the Navy in 1975. He attended Hospital Corps School and Field Medical Service School before being stationed at the First Marine Brigade, Third Marine Division. He served as a special operations corpsman/combat swimmer, and was deployed to the Arctic, the Pacific, and in South East Asia.
From 1982-1990, Morgan served as the primary corpsman for a reserve platoon of Navy Frogmen from in Vallejo, CA. After being discharged from active duty, he completed a Bachelor of Science Degree from The University of New York (now Excelsior College) and earned his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic-West. In 1985, he served as a healthcare worker for three months in the jungles of Liberia in West Africa with the Christian relief agency, Partners International.
Dr. Morgan began practicing as a chiropractor in 1986. He was credentialed in two civilian hospitals in central California. For the five years preceding his 1998 appointment to NNMC, Bethesda, he spent two mornings each week in a rural medical clinic working with medical doctors, physician's assistants, and nurse practitioners. This rural health clinic provided care for poor and underprivileged people as well as residents of a local Indian reservation.
Dr. Morgan was the American Chiropractic Association's Chiropractor of the Year in 2003.
He has remained athletically active throughout his life, competing in triathlons, weight lifting and karate tournaments, marathons, and open water swim races. He has swum from Alcatraz Island to San Francisco five times, and has also swum the seven miles from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Oakland Bay Bridge. He has completed a technical climb of half-dome in Yosemite. He is a third-degree black belt in Kenpo Karate/Aki-Jujitsu and teaches martial arts at Chieftain Martial Arts Academy in Derwood, Maryland.
Dr. Morgan is married to fellow chiropractor, Dr. Clare Morgan, and they have four children.
Tell us about your experience in the military prior to practicing as a chiropractor in a military setting?
I joined the Navy at age 17 and became a hospital corpsman. During my time in the Navy I served as a corpsman for Marine Recon, where I was trained in special warfare techniques including combat diving, anti-terrorist tactics, parachuting, mountaineering, arctic survival, and underwater swimmer insertions from submarines. While I deployed overseas, our unit rescued a ship full of Vietnamese refugees who had been attacked by modern-day pirates and left sinking. I was able to provide humanitarian medical care to those who had been injured.
After my discharge from active duty, I served in a reserve Harbor Clearance Unit as a diver. I was briefly recalled to help salvage and raise the floating museum USS Potomac when it sank in San Francisco Bay. The USS Potomac was President Roosevelt's presidential yacht during WWII. Soon I transferred to Naval Special Warfare Unit 1 to serve as the corpsman (medic) for a platoon of frogmen. I was in this reserve unit for eight years. We primarily trained for commando-type missions: parachuting into the ocean, swimming with special SCUBA equipment that left no bubbles, performing our operation and then traveling back to sea to rendezvous with a submarine.