BOW - Paul E. Emery, M.D. died peacefully Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, surrounded by family at the Manchester VAMC Hospice Unit. He was 91 years old. Born May 2, 1922 in Montreal, Canada, son of physician, Fernand Emery, M.D. and homemaker, Julia Emery, he was the fifth of six children. At age 13, Paul decided he would become a psychiatrist.
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And so he did. For over 50 years, he was a gifted, dedicated, hard-working, highly skilled, compassionate psychiatrist who successfully treated thousands of patients, helping them to realize a better life than they would have had otherwise. The welfare of his patients, was Dr. Emery's primary concern in life. Being a good doctor, good psychiatrist was fundamental to his life and core identity.
He trained at Syracuse Psychopathic Hospital, Western New England Psychoanalytic Institute, Yale University, and was an NIMH Fellow at Austin Riggs Center in Stockbridge, Mass. His training was interrupted by the Korean War. He became Captain and Division Psychiatrist and Chief, Mental Hygiene Clinic in the U.S. Army, where he received commendations for his excellent service. Following this, he went back and finished his psychiatric training.
In 1962, Dr. Emery moved to Concord, and started the private practice of psychiatry. On South Street and the Professional Building, he practiced psychiatry for more than 23 years. During this time he was Consultant for Concord Hospital; St. Paul's School; and the Division of Public Health Program on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. He was also Medical Director for the Forensic Unit of NH State Hospital. Following this, he became the first Medical Director and then Executive Director for the Federal Bureau of Veterans Affairs newly legislated First Center on Stress Recovery in Brecksville, Ohio. Following that, Dr. Emery became Chief of Psychiatry at the Manchester VAMC. After retirement from VAMC (1999), Dr. Emery became Staff Psychiatrist at Manchester Counseling Services and Elliot Hospital. Also, he was appointed and served on the New Hampshire Parole Board (2008-2009).
Dr. Emery had an academic/faculty appointment at Dartmouth Medical School from the 1960's until he retired in 2005. He published about 30 scientific articles and chapters dealing primarily with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Dr. Emery was among the very first to address the topic of risk factors for PTSD. While working with veterans he developed a successful treatment model for PTSD. He coined the term "trauma psychology".
He founded the NH Psychiatric Society (1972) and held various chairmanships and offices in that organization, including being President during the 1980's and Chair, Ethics Committee during 1990's. He was also active in NH Medical Society and was Vice-President during mid-1970's. Dr. Emery received many honors during his career including Certificate of Commendation for Services to Public and Profession from NH Medical Society (1972). He received a similar commendation from NH Psychiatric Society in 1984. During 1970's he was honored with plaques from the NH Advisory Commission on Health and Welfare and from NH Program on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. Dr. Emery was also biographee in Who's Who in America; Who's Who in Medicine; Who's Who in the World.
For years, Paul Emery was known as "Mr. Psychiatry." He also was known as having "an iron fist in a velvet glove." Paul has high intelligence, enormous insight and intellectual capacity, all of which he applied toward making patients healthier. It has been said of Paul that "he makes the world a better place everyday."
Lifelong, Paul worked extraordinarily hard. He was indefatigable with a strong work ethic. His one departure from this work pattern was in early 1980's when he suffered a stroke. He was told he had "only two years to live." He struggled and found his way back from the resulting speech and handwriting deficits. He lived 31 years beyond that time and died at age 91 after a five year battle with cancer.
He was the beloved husband and best friend of Dr. Virginia O. Beattie Emery.
Paul Emery is survived by his sons, Michael Emery, M.A. (Beth) of Dedham, Mass. and James Emery, J.D. of San Francisco; and stepson, Paul Hamilton Beattie, J.D. (Helga Marie) of Seattle. He also leaves behind daughter, Katherine Emery, Ph.D. of San Francisco; and stepdaughter Tamsan Beattie Tharin, M.A. of New Hampton. Paul was the beloved grandfather of Kelly Emery, Daniel Emery, Nora Emery, Thora Tharin, Nadia Beattie, Hedin Beattie, Konrad Beattie, Stefan Beattie and Julian Beattie.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, Sept. 21, at 3:30 p.m. at the Concord Unitarian Church, 274 Pleasant St., followed by a reception in the church parlor.
A graveside service, with military honors, will take place Friday, Sept. 20, at 1 p.m. at the New Hampshire Veterans Cemetery in Boscawen (Exit 17 off I-93).
Contributions may be made in Paul's memory to the New Hampshire Veterans Cemetery Assoc., PO Box 626, Concord, 03302-0626.
The Bennett Funeral Home of Concord is in charge of the arrangements. Messages of condolence may be offered at bennettfuneral.com.
Published in The Concord Monitor on Sept. 11, 2013