DR. JOHN BURROUGHS MOYER
DR. JOHN BURROUGHS MOYER
Dr. John Burroughs Moyer, 99, passed away peacefully on April 14, 2017 in Duluth.
John was born in St. Paul on Dec. 1, 1917 to Amos F. and Marie Evans Moyer. He was raised in the Prospect Park neighborhood and attended Marshall High School. He earned his bachelor of science and doctor of medicine degrees from the University of Minnesota in 1943. Immediately upon graduation he entered the Army Medical Corps and served with the Third Army during the invasion of Europe. He was specially trained by the Army to treat chemical warfare (mustard gas) injuries. After WWII Dr. Moyer was recruited to Wayne Country General Hospital where he completed a residency and fellowship in internal medicine and hematology. At that time, nitrogen mustards represented the state of the art for treating leukemia; John was especially well-suited, based on his Army Medical Corps training, to study that form of cancer treatment. Dr. Moyer joined the Duluth Clinic in 1950. His clinical practice was focused on treatment of cancer, with patients coming from across the Upper Midwest to take advantage of his state-of-the-art care and compassion. He was involved in a joint venture with Mayo Clinic to create the North Central Cancer Treatment Group, an entity designed to enhance patient care based on experience gained by and shared across many different medical centers. Dr. Moyer was president of the Duluth Clinic 1967-70, chief of staff at St. Mary's Hospital 1970-71, facilitated the merger of St. Mary's Hospital with Duluth Clinic (SMDC) in 1970, and served as SMDC's first chairman 1970-75. He was a fellow of the American College of Physicians, past president of the Minnesota Heart Association, the Minnesota Society of Internal Medicine, and the St. Louis County Medical Society. He was clinical professor of medicine at the University of Minnesota-Duluth. Dr. Moyer was awarded the Laureate Award of the American College of Physicians in 1990 for his work to advance the practice of oncology in the United States.
John Moyer met Mary Charlotte Smith in 1941 during summer employment at Lake McDonald Lodge in Glacier Park. He wooed her through medical school and while serving in the Army. While celebrating the liberation of Paris, he acquired a bottle of Chanel No. 5 to advance his marriage proposal. John and Charlotte were married Dec. 27, 1945. John loved the outdoors, selecting Duluth for his medical practice so that he could be close to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. He was an avid fisherman, boater and duck hunter, so a lake cabin was also in the life plan. The cabin on Hart Lake near Iron River, Wis. was an important part of the Moyer family for 50 years. It was there, also, that many family relationships were formed and solidified. John and Charlotte were longtime members of the Northland Country Club, Kitchi Gammi Club, and Palmbrook Country Club in Sun City, Ariz. After retirement in 1981, John and Charlotte spent the winter in Sun City, where they took up the game of golf. John's goal was to shoot his age, which came closer to reality the older he got. They spent their summers at Hart Lake, traveled extensively, and returned to Duluth permanently in 2013.
Dr. Moyer was preceded in death by his parents; his brother Robert Moyer (Chicago); and his grandson, Thomas Bretto Dougherty.
Dr. Moyer is survived by Charlotte, his wife of 72 years; five children, Dr. Thomas P. Moyer (Diane) of Golden Valley, Mary B. Dougherty (Dr. Thomas) of Duluth, Katherine A. Bloom (Dr. Stephen) of Two Harbors, Paul E. Moyer (Susan) of St. Paul, and Martha M. Wagoner (Robert) of Scottsdale, Ariz.; 13 grandchildren, Michael Moyer (Michelle), Peter Moyer (Shanna Hanson), Thomas Moyer, Sara Dougherty, Mina Bradley (Patrick), Katherine Dougherty, Jesse Thurber- Dean (Ryan), Jason Bloom (Melyssa), Daniel Bloom (Denise), Jacob Bloom, Katherine Tuttle (Jake), and Evan Moyer; and 14 great-grandchildren.
Dr. Moyer is remembered for his commitment to patient care, and for advancing cancer treatment and making it available to patients from Michigan to Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ontario, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan. John also took great pride from the accomplishments of his large family, and serving as physician and friend to Sigurd Olson, noted advocate of the Boundary Waters. He treasured living in the Northland. Duluth lost a great man in Dr. Moyer. He will be missed by many.
The family thanks Ecumen Lakeshore and Essentia St Mary's Hospice staff for their kind care, and requests that memorials be directed to Essentia Health Cancer Center, 400 E. 3rd St., Duluth MN 55805.
CELEBRATION OF LIFE: 2 p.m. Saturday, May 20 at the Kitchi Gammi Club, 831 E. Superior St., Duluth MN 55802.
Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, 218-727-3555.