Hugh Woods

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Hugh Jean Woods, M.D. age 86 of Kansas City, MO, died of natural causes on Wednesday, May 15, 2013 while a resident of Kansas City Hospice & Palliative Care. Hugh was born December 22, 1926 in Tyro, KS. His
parents, Samuel Branchford Woods and Hattie Crawford Woods, had four sons: Stanley, George, Hugh and Dwight. The four brothers stayed in close contact with each other and never forgot the love of their parents through out these many years. Education was deeply valued by his parents and was reflected in Hugh's own educational path. He graduated from Caney High School in Caney, KS and soon after, enlisted in the United States Army in June of 1944. The army sent him to Yale University in New Haven, CT in September, 1944 as part of an experimental program to be a student in the Asian Studies School to learn the spoken Japanese language as well as its culture, geography, and its written language. In March of 1945, the Army sent Hugh to Camp Maxie in TX for basic training that was completed in June. He was then sent to the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis for six more months of Japanese immersion language training. In February 1946, he was sent to Otsu, Japan, where his job as an Intelligence Observer was to search out hidden arms and armaments by interviewing Japanese citizens. Hugh returned from Japan in November of 1946 and was discharged from the Army as a Corporal. He enrolled at the University of Kansas where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in 1949. He finished his Medical Doctor's degree at the University of Kansas in Kansas City, KS, in 1952, followed by a medicine internship at Ancker Hospital in St. Paul, MN. He moved to Smith Center, KS, to join his friends R.G. 'Shep' Sheppard, Lafe Bauer, and Dennis Hardman in the practice of medicine in rural Kansas. He stepped away from Smith Center in July 1955 to continue his training in internal medicine at the University Of Kansas Medical Center, completing his studies in 1956. Upon returning to Smith Center, where he remained for more than three decades, he served as Vice-President and President at the Smith County Memorial Hospital; he was awarded Board Certification by the newly established American Academy of Family Practice in 1977; he became a Fellow of the American Academy; he was a member of the North Central Kansas Medical Society, the Kansas Medical Society and the American Medical Association; he served as Vice-President and President at the Smith County Memorial Hospital; he was awarded Board Certification by the newly established American Academy of Family Practice in 1977; he served as President the last 2 years of his 13 years on the Smith Center School Board of Education; and he served as a Preceptor for the University of Kansas School of Medicine for 20 years, hosting many fourth year medical students for a month of rural medicine experience. He was a designated flight examiner for the Federal Aviation Administration from 1962 until 1985. Hugh had a life-long interest in cardiology and late in his career obtained special training and certification in gerontology. Hugh was a prolific gardener and small plane pilot. In 1987, Hugh and Jo moved to Grand Island, Nebraska where he practiced at the Veteran's Administration Hospital. He was the Director of the VA's Long Term Care unit and Nebraska State Nursing Home, retiring from medical practice and the VA in 1992. Shortly thereafter, Hugh and Jo moved to Lee's Summit, MO. He is survived by his wife, Jo, of 58 years, his four children: Mark, Mitch, Mike and Wendy, his five grandchildren, his one great grandchild and by his eldest brother, Stanley C. Woods, who has been a long time resident of Houston, TX. His parents, Sam and Hattie, his brothers George and Dwight, and nephew James Woods preceded him in death. A Celebration of Life service was held at McGilley Memorial Chapel, Kansas City, MO, on May 25, 2013.

Published in Houston Chronicle on June 5, 2013
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