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Bernie A. McConnell

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Dr. Bernie A. McConnell
passed away on Sunday, Nov. 17, 2013 at Bethany Nursing Home with his wife and constant companion, Dona, at his side. Dr. McConnell or Dr. Bernie, as his patients and their parents called him, practiced Pediatric Dentistry in Canton for 40 years. After his retirement he spent six months in Canton and six months on Singer Island, Florida. Dr. Bernie graduated from Lehman High School, did his undergraduate work at Miami University, and received his dental degree at The Ohio State University. He did his post graduate work at The Universities of Michigan, Northwestern, Pennsylvania and Kentucky. He was extremely active in organizations. On the local level, he was a Past Secretary, Member of Council and served on numerous committees of The Stark County Dental Society. He was past President of the Canton Dental Society, and The Council for Retarded Citizens, as it was called then. He was United Fund Chairman of the Dental Division. On the state level, Dr. Bernie was a Life Member and Delegate to The American Dental Association for 26 years, and member and chairman of many committees for The Ohio Dental Association. He was a member by invitation of the Ohio Academy of Dental Practice Administration, Member and on the Executive Board of Trustees of Delta Dental Plan of Ohio, Past President and Life Member of The Ohio Society of Dentistry. Dr. Bernie co-organized The Ohio Society of Pediatric Dentistry and was the Charter President. He was President and on The Board of Governors of The Ohio State University College of Dentistry Alumni Society and Life Member.
Nationally, he is a Life Member of The American Dental Association, and served as either a Delegate or Alternate Delegate for 19 years. He is a Past President of The Academy of Dentistry for the Handicapped and a Life Member. He served on several committees and a Life Member of The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. He was a Charter Board Member of The National Foundation of Dentistry for the Handicapped. As far as Honorary Memberships, Bernie is a Fellow of The International College of Dentistry, Fellow of The Academy of Dentistry for the Handicapped, Fellow of The Pierre Fauchard Academy, Honorary Member of The Ecuadorian Dental Society. Other honors conferred: Recipient of Merit, Dental Society of Guayaquil, Ecuador, Recipient of The Humanitarian Award of The Ohio Dental Association, Certificate of Merit, The University of Nicaragua, Humanitarian Award of The Ohio Dental Association, Certificate of Merit, The University of Nicaragua, Humanitarian Service Award Ohio State Surgical Association, Distinguished Service Award, Stark County Dental Society, Charter Inductee Distinguished Dental Service Academy, The Stark County Dental Society, Charter Recipient of The Lehman High School Distinguished Alumnus Award, and The 2006 Distinguished Alumni of The Ohio State University, College of Dentistry. Dr. Bernie served as a Pediatric Dentist on Project Hope missions to Ecuador and Nicaragua. He served on Project Hope's Dental Advisory Committee preparing the curriculum for the voyages. He was a member of Phi Delta Fraternity and Psi Omega Dental Fraternity. He was a consultant on the Timken Mercy and Kent State University Cleft Palate Team, Task Force for Childrens Dental Health Program of The Ohio Dental Association. He was the founder of the Dental Assistants Vocational Program at Timken High School. Dr. Bernie was on the Dean's Advisory Committee of The Ohio State University, College of Dentistry, and a member of NEOCOM's Council on Dentistry.
Dr. Bernie published several scientific papers, and was on various radio and television programs regarding dentistry and a Guest Lecturer at many groups. He was listed in Who's Who in the Midwest and Dictionary of International Biography, Personalities of the West and Midwest, Community Leaders and Noteworthy Americans, Contemporary Personalities and Men of Achievement.
He and his wife, Dona of 60 years retired 20 years ago after 40 years of practice of Pediatric Dentistry. After their retirement he planned to relax for six months on Singer Island, Florida, but soon after was talked into being the Vice President of The Singer Island Civic Association and the Community Officers Association of Singer Island. Bernie and Dona both want to sincerely thank the wonderful people at Bethany Nursing Home, who are so efficient and caring and treat you not just as a patient, but as family.
Bernie was preceded in death by his mother, Harriet (Nan) McConnell and his father, Dr. Harold (Mac) McConnell and his brother, William Philip McConnell. He is survived by his beloved wife, Dona; brother-in-law, Dr. Francis J. Lowry, wife, Sally and their three children and grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at the Mausoleum at North Lawn Cemetery on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013 at 11 a.m., 4927 Cleveland Ave NW, Canton, with Father Edward Stafford officiating. Friends are welcome to attend. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to , The Lehman Scholarship Fund, The McConnell Pediatric Dental Anesthesia Suite at The Ohio State University or to The University of Mount Union Health Initiative programs.
(Arnold-Canton 330-456-7291)

Published in The Repository on Nov. 19, 2013
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