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Howard Wilbur Jones Jr.

1910 - 2015 Notice Condolences
Howard Wilbur Jones Jr. Notice

Howard Wilbur Jones Jr, died peacefully at Sentara Hospital in Norfolk , Virginia on July 31, 2015. The pioneer of in vitro fertilization was 104 years old.. Howard Jones was born in Baltimore, Maryland on December 30, 1910. Interestingly, he was delivered at home by an obstetrician who would be the father of his wife, Georgeanna Seegar. After attending Friends School in Baltimore, he enrolled at Amherst College where he graduated in 1931 with a Bachelor of Arts degree (Cum Laude). He then returned to Baltimore where he attended Johns Hopkins Medical School, graduating in 1935. During medical school he became reacquainted with another young medical student, Georgeanna Seegar, and the two began to date seriously. Howard went on to a residency in Gynecology and then in General Surgery. In those days residents actually lived in the hospital and were not allowed to be married so that the day he graduated from his residency, June 22, 1940, Howard and Georgeanna were married. Theirs was a wonderful family and professional partnership that lasted 65 years. Shortly after their marriage World War II intervened and Howard joined the 5th Auxiliary Surgical Group, which was involved in the whole European theater. He returned to the United States via the Pacific in 1946 with the rank of major. The story of his experiences is told in juxtaposition to Georgeanna's life at home and their letters are woven together in his book, War and Love. Returning to Baltimore, Dr Jones went on to complete his residency in Gynecology at The Johns Hopkins Hospital under the mentorship of Dr. Richard TeLinde. Following his residency, he remained at Hopkins where he became renowned as a skilled pelvic surgeon and teacher. He initially concentrated his efforts on cancer and became Medical Director of the American Cancer Society in Maryland for a short time. As time went on he became more involved with infertility and problems of reproduction. He developed several novel surgical procedures including an operative technique to repair an abnormal uterus that was dubbed the "Jones metroplasty." He and his wife Georgeanna, who was the first Reproductive Endocrinologist at an academic program in the United States, were a formidable team in diagnosing and treating female infertility and reproductive problems. After a long and very productive career as a surgeon, teacher and medical scientist at Johns Hopkins he and Georgeanna retired¿.. But not for long. In 1978, when Howard was 68, Dr. Mason Andrews, one of their former fellows at Johns Hopkins who was now the Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at a new medical school in Norfolk invited them to stay active by joining his faculty at the Eastern Virginia Medical School. They moved to Norfolk and shortly after arriving, they began work on the first in vitro fertilization program in the United States. After much hard work and the contributions of many physicians and scientists at EVMS and others in the Norfolk community, Elizabeth Carr was born on December 28, 1981 at Norfolk General Hospital. The Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine at EVMS became the world leader in developing IVF technology and training young reproductive endocrinologists throughout the world. Howard Jones was a member of many national and international societies and organizations including the American Gynecological and Obstetrical Society, the American Fertility Society, the Society of Pelvic Surgeons and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. He was awarded honorary membership in more than 20 foreign scientific societies and was awarded a fellowship ad eundem in the Royal Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of England. He received the Distinguished Service Award from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the Medal of College of France. Howard's energy and enthusiasm carried over to his personal life and he enjoyed time with his wife his family at home, on vacation trips and on their boat in the Chesapeake Bay. Georgeanna died in 2005 after 65 years of marriage. Howard is survived by his daughter, Georgeanna Jones Klingensmith, a pediatric endocrinologist in Denver and two sons, Howard W. Jones III, a gynecologic oncologist in Nashville and Lawrence M. Jones, a financial analyst in Denver. He had 7 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren. A small private family funeral will be held at the family home in Gibson Island, Maryland and a memorial service is planned for a future date at Eastern Virginia Medical School. Memorial contributions may be made to the Howard and Georgeanna Jones Foundation for Reproductive Medicine, 601 Colley Ave, Norfolk, VA 23507 or to the Jones Family Reproductive Medicine Research Fund at Eastern Virginia Medical School, P.O. Box 1980, Norfolk, VA 23501-1980. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts. Norfolk Chapel is handling arrangements and online condolences may be offered to the family at:
Published in Baltimore Sun on Aug. 3, 2015
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