OBITUARIES Fall 2009 Frank M. Byers, MD'58, a widely

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OBITUARIES Fall 2009 Frank M. Byers, MD'58, a widely Powered By Docstoc
Fall 2009

Frank M. Byers, MD’58, a widely known and respected thoracic/vascular surgeon in St.
Petersburg, Fla., died at home on June 2. He was 76. While at Duke earning his medical degree,
he was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society. Dr. Byers opened a private
surgical practice in St. Petersburg in 1960, from which he retired in 1998. He served as chief of
staff and chief of surgery in the early 1990s at Palms of Pasadena Hospital. His memberships
included the American College of Surgeons; International Society of Cardiovascular Surgeons;
Society of Thoracic Surgeons; and Southern Thoracic Surgical Association. He was an avid
boater throughout his adult life and was a member of the St. Petersburg Yacht Club. Upon
retirement he continued boating, made good use of his golf membership at St. Petersburg
Country Club, and renewed his teenage fondness for motorcycles in the form of a Honda Gold
Wing. He joined his local chapter of the Honda Gold Wing Road Riders Association and enjoyed
all of the group's activities and camaraderie with his fellow bikers.

William C. Daggett, MD, HS’08, of Davis, Calif., died July 5 when the single-engine plane he
was piloting crashed upon takeoff from South Lake Tahoe Airport. He was 41. Dr. Daggett
specialized in adult and pediatric cardiothoracic surgery. He practiced at top hospitals
nationwide, including children's hospitals in Los Angeles, Memphis, and Washington. He also
wrote more than 20 journal articles on cardiac surgery as a researcher at Duke University. He
moved to Davis in 2004 and performed surgery at Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital and at a primary
care clinic that he opened. He also worked at a weight-loss clinic that he established in
Sacramento. Dr. Daggett cut back on his surgery practice in recent years to free up time for
flying. He was an instrument-rated pilot and recently bought the single-engine Cessna plane he
was flying solo when it crashed. He piloted small planes on aid trips, including a flight to New
Orleans to take medical supplies and to treat Hurricane Katrina victims. Dr. Daggett graduated
from California State University, Los Angeles, and earned a medical degree in 1992 at the
University of California, San Francisco. He had six children during a 16-year marriage to Dr.
Pauline Perez that ended in divorce in 2006. He also had a child with a former girlfriend. He is
survived by his sister Minnie Obregon of Wenatchee, Wash.; daughters Jessica, Laura, and
Audrey, all of Davis; and Acacia of Tennessee; and sons Casey, Jacob, and Paul, all of Davis.

Eugene M. Evans Jr, MD’53, HS’54-’57, died peacefully at Danville Regional Medical Center
in Danville, Va., on June 27. He was 83. Dr. Evans was a veteran of World War II, serving in the
U.S. Navy from l944 to l946 in the Signal Corps. He was a lover of all types of music, a world
traveler, and a member of the Kiwanis Club of Danville. He is survived by cousins Mike
Richardson of Raleigh, David Richardson of Charleston, S.C., and Lewis Ladehoff of New York,
N.Y., and close friend and companion Carolyn Perkinson, of Danville.

Gerard G. Gingras, MD, HS’58-61, of Akron, Ohio, died March 31. He was 79. Gingras attended
McGill University in Montreal from 1948-52 and majored in mathematics and physics. He earned a
medical degree from Ottawa University and performed an internship at St. Thomas Hospital in Akron
from 1955-58, and a residency at Duke from 1958-61. Gingras had a private practice in Akron and was
the former chief of staff at Akron General Medical Center. He was actively involved in many medical
associations and volunteer organizations. Gingras is survived by sons Robert and David; daughters
Elizabeth, Beverly, and Barbara; five grandchildren; a brother; and special friend Isabel Hershberger.

Joel F. Ginsberg, MD, HS’78-’80, of Signal Mountain, Tenn., died Aug. 1 from complications
of early onset Alzheimer's disease. He was 59. Dr. Ginsberg was diagnosed with the illness in
2003 and was forced into an unexpected retirement from his pulmonary medicine practice at
Diagnostic Center, where he had practiced for 23 years. He attended the University of Georgia
where he was the chancellor of Tau Epsilon Phi fraternity. He graduated from the Medical
College of Georgia and completed his internal medicine residency at the Medical College of
Virginia. He completed a fellowship in pulmonary medicine at Duke. He was a Diplomate in the
American College of Physicians and a Fellow in the American College of Chest Physicians. He
also was a member of the Chattanooga-Hamilton County Medical Society and a member of
Mizpah Congregation. Dr. Ginsberg is survived by his wife of 37 years, Phyllis N. Ginsberg, and
by his daughters Paige (Evan) Pearson, and Cara (Michael) Lubin, and their children, Jaron
Nash, Lexi Pearson, Asher Fine, and Kitty Ann Lubin. Also surviving are his brother, Jay (Jean)
Ginsberg, and his sister Janet Perfetti, various in-laws, nieces, and nephews.

William H. Glass, MD’37, of West Hartford, Conn., died June 30. He was 96. He was educated
at Johns Hopkins and Furman University where he was captain of the swim team and a quarter-
finalist for the 1932 Summer Olympics. He served as a junior surgeon in the U.S. Coast Guard
during World War II and settled in West Hartford with his wife Ruth. A past president of the
Hartford Medical Society, he practiced internal medicine for almost 60 years, after which he
studied history and political science at the University of Hartford until very recently. He was a
master carpenter and apprentice electrician, championship trap and skeet shooter, a past president
of the Hartford Gun Club, photographer, bridge player, world traveler, avid reader, and a fixture
on the squash courts of the Hartford YMCA well into his 70s. He is survived by his son Andrew
of Avon; his daughter Prudence of Brooklyn, N.Y., his daughter Deena and her husband Marty
of Berkeley, Calif; and three grandsons, Jeremiah, Zachary and Noah. He was predeceased by his
older sister Hazel and younger brother Robert.

James F. Glenn, MD'53, HS’56-'59, of Versailles, Ky., an internationally known urologist who
was a chief of urology at Duke from 1963-80, died June 10 at University of Kentucky (UK)
Hospital. He was 81. Dr. Glenn served as director of the Markey Cancer Center at UK from 1989
to 1993 and as chief of staff at UK Hospital from 1993 to 1996. He was acting chairman of
surgery at UK Medical Center from 1996 to 1998. Dr. Glenn was board chairman of Lexington's
Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital from 1992 to 1995, and at the time of his death was
chairman of the Lexington History Museum board. He financed the Glenn Building at
Transylvania University. A past president of the Société Internationale d'Urologie, Dr. Glenn
received that organization's highest honor in 2007. A former leader in many professional
organizations, he also was a former governor of the American College of Surgeons. He was
named an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons in England in 1987 and received a
lifetime achievement award from the American Urological Association in 1994. Early in his
career he taught at Yale University and Wake Forest University. He was dean of Emory
University School of Medicine from 1980 to 1983, and president of Mount Sinai Medical Center
from 1983 to 1987. Survivors include his wife Gay Elste Darsie Glenn; sons Cambridge F. Glenn
II and James M. Glenn; daughters Sara Brooke Glenn and Nancy Carrick Glenn Goldner; and
seven grandchildren.

Henry B. Grant, MD'41, HS’46-'47, of, Rocky Mount, N.C., died July 5. He was 92. He
attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received his medical degree from
Duke University School of Medicine. He served as a medical officer in the U.S. Army during
World War II. As a paratrooper he jumped during the D-Day invasion in France. His military
career ended when he stepped on a land mine during the Battle of the Bulge, resulting in a year-
long hospital stay. He returned to Duke and completed a residency in pediatrics. He then moved
to Rocky Mount and established a private practice in pediatrics which he maintained for almost
50 years. Dr. Grant was a member of the active staff of Park View Hospital and was one of the
original members of the staff at Nash General Hospital. He served as president of the medical
staff at Nash General in 1974. Dr. Grant was a founding member of Englewood United
Methodist Church and served as the church's first chairman of the board. He was a member of
the Rocky Mount Rotary Club for 47 years and honored as a Paul Harris Fellow in 1985. He
served as a board member of the Rocky Mount Chamber of Commerce, Nash County School
Board, and director for Nash Community College. On April 12, 1984 Dr. Grant received The
Halifax Resolves Award for Outstanding Accomplishment in the Field of Historic Preservation
for his efforts in restoring Glen Ivey in Halifax. He was active on the Historic Halifax
Restoration Association Board. In 1983 Dr. Grant was presented the Algernon Sydney Sullivan
Award for public service by North Carolina Wesleyan College. Surviving are his wife, Carolyn
Rabil Grant; sons and daughters-in-law Henry and Georgia Grant of Des Moines, Ia.; James and
Sue Church Grant of Rocky Mount; daughters and sons-in-law Betty C. Grant and Bill Casey of
Minneapolis, Minn.; Adrianna and Benson Kirkman of Raleigh; Ann and Scotty Winstead of
Momeyer; and multiple grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his
first wife Elizabeth Applewhite Grant; his brothers, James, Nick, and John Grant; and his sisters,
Elizabeth Grant Outland and Josephine Grant.
Mervyn R. Hamlin, MD’50, DC-Lifetime, died May 28 at his home in Fort Bragg, Calif.
following a long illness. He was 89.

William E. Leeper, Jr. MD’44, HS’44-’48, of Gastonia, N.C., died July 26. He was 89. Dr.
Leeper was a private practice internist in Springfield, Ohio from 1948-51 and in Gastonia from
1952-53, where he was the first board certified internist in Gastonia. He entered the U.S. Army
from 1953-55 and was a Captain in the Medical Corps. He returned to private practice in
Gastonia in1955 and retired in 1985. Dr. Leeper was a member of Alpha Omega Alpha honorary
medical society; a Diplomat of the American Board of Internal Medicine; member of the
American Medical Association, North Carolina Medical Society, American Society of Internal
Medicine, and North Carolina Society of Internal Medicine. He served as chief of staff at Gaston
Memorial Hospital, as board member of Gaston Hospice and Office of Ageing of Gaston
County, and was a lifetime member of the Master Gardeners of Gaston County. He is survived
by his wife Sylvia Ledbetter Leeper; daughters Zoe Patricia Leeper of Gastonia, and Elizabeth
Johnson Leeper of Atlanta; nephew John Edward Taylor and wife Grace; and niece Mary
Isabelle Taylor. In addition to his parents and first wife Monabelle Johnson Leeper, he was
preceded in death by sister Isabelle Leeper Taylor, brother Joseph Stowe Leeper, and brother-in-
law Jack-son W. Taylor.

Fred W. Miller, MD, HS’63-’66, of Redwood City, Calif., died May 16. He was 83. At the age
of 17 he attended and played football for Yale University. At age 18 he enlisted in the U.S. Army
Air Corps during WWII. After the war he graduated from the University of Washington and
from the University of Washington School of Medicine. A general surgery residency led him to
Duke University and then to Stanford University for a plastic surgery residency. After about 20
years in private practice as a reconstructive plastic surgeon he taught plastic surgery at the
University of California at Davis and later at Stanford. In addition to his passion for education,
he loved the water and spent most weekends of his retirement sailing in the San Francisco Bay
with good friends. He is survived by his four children: Dean Peters Miller, Penelope Miller
Lindblom, Maximilian Wynn Miller, and Kelly Sullivan Miller; and two grandchildren, Daniel
James Miller and Sean Martin Miller.

John S. Vetter MD’54, Rockingham, N.C., died July 22 at his home. He was 81. Dr. Vetter was
an Eagle Scout. He graduated from Wake Forest College and Duke University School of
Medicine. While at Duke he received special training in pediatrics at St. Bartholomew’s Hospital
in London, England. He interned at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta. After completing his
internship he served in the U.S. Air Force where he attained the rank of Captain and served as a
flight and base surgeon. In 1956, Dr. Vetter spent a year as a family practitioner at Carolina
Beach before moving to Rockingham where he served in family medicine for over 51 years. Dr.
Vetter served as the president of the Richmond County Medical Society and served three terms
as president of the Richmond Memorial Hospital Medical Staff. He was a member of the
American Medical Society and the Southern Medical Association. He also was a Fellow of the
American Academy of Family Practice and a Diplomat of the American Board of Family
Practice. For over 25 years he was the team physician for the Rockingham High School and the
Richmond Senior High School football teams. He was the first president of the initial group
championing the teaching and training of students with special needs. As a result, a program for
Special Education was established in Richmond County before the state program began. In 1963
the County Commissioners appointed Dr. Vetter to head the committee to establish a technical
school in Richmond County under the Community College Act during the term of then-Governor
Terry Sanford. This school later developed into what is now Richmond Community College. Dr.
Vetter served as the president of the local American Heart Association, the American Cancer
Society and the County Unit of the North Carolina Symphony Association. He was chairman of
the committee to publicize the consolidation of the high schools in Richmond County. He served
two times as the president of the Rockingham Chamber of Commerce and three times as the
president of the Rockingham Cotillion Club. In addition, Dr. Vetter was a past member of the
local Board of Directors of Southern National Bank and then a board member of Richmond
Federal Savings and Loan for 33 years where he also served as chairman of the board. He was a
former member of the Rockingham Civitan Club and was later awarded the Citizen of the Year
Award by the Civitans and the Distinguished Service Award by the Jaycees. Dr. Vetter served as
the medical director of the Richmond County Health Department until shortly before his death.
His most recent contribution to the community was in helping to establish a medical clinic at the
health department which assists older citizens who are uninsured. Dr. Vetter is survived by his
wife, the former Sallie Middlebrooks; and two daughters, Martha Vetter, who serves as a
missionary in Rwanda, and Sara Vetter Mayhew and her husband Dr. Michael Mayhew of
Boone; and three grandchildren, Kelly Mayhew Caron and her husband, Nate Caron; John
Mayhew, and Katherine Mayhew.

James E. Welch, MD’51, of Las Cruces, N.M. died August 5 after a lengthy illness. He was 85.
Dr. Welch attended Virginia Tech for one semester before joining the U.S. Army Air Corps. He
was stationed on Guam and flew many missions over Japan, proudly serving his country as a
navigator. After the war he enrolled at Duke University where he received his medical degree.
He married the former Joyce Laybourn and they lived in Denver where he practiced general
medicine. Dr. Welch went on to complete a residency in psychiatry and spent the remainder of
his professional career as an esteemed psychiatrist. He and his family moved to Las Cruces in
1969 and he opened a private psychiatry practice. He was active at Memorial Medical Center and
served as chief of staff. He was one of the founders of Mesilla Valley Hospital, which opened in
1986, and he served as the hospital's first CEO. Dr. Welch also worked at the New Mexico State
University Health Center. In March 1991 he married Mary Mathers of Las Cruces and together
for the years to come the couple became a viable part of the Las Cruces Community. In addition
to running a thriving private medical practice, Dr. Welch loved to fly his Cessna 182. He he was
an avid bridge player and was interested in cattle, farming, and woodworking. He is survived by
his wife, Mary; his sister Frances Tuthill of Albuquerque; daughters Julie Schultz (Kurt) of
Parker, Colo.; Holly Finlay of Albuquerque; and son James (Susan) of Steamboat Springs, Colo;
stepdaughter Laura Conniff (John) of Las Cruces and stepson Les Mathers of Morton, Ill.; and
by several grandchildren and step-grandchildren.