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Wilbur James Baggs

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Wilbur James Baggs Obituary
NEWPORT NEWS - Wilbur James Baggs, 94, passed away Monday, August 11. He was the loving husband of Jessie Fleta Baggs for nearly 34 years. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Jim grew up in Richmond, Virginia, where he graduated from the University of Richmond in 1940 and Medical College of Virginia in December 1943. He served in World War II as a member of the U.S. Navy Medical Corps, serving on Guadalcanal, Okinawa, and Guam with the 6th Marine Division as a Battalion Surgeon. After being discharged from the Navy, he trained at Norfolk General Hospital in Obstetrics and Gynecology, and served his residency at Charity Hospital in New Orleans, Louisiana. In 1951 he moved to Newport News to specialize in Gynecology, where he practiced until 1991. During his career he was a member of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the American College of Surgeons, and the Gynecological Society for the Study of Breast Disease. He was also a member of the Medical Society of Virginia and past-president of the Newport News Medical Society. While in practice, he pioneered in the establishment of a center for early detection of Breast Cancer, giving many lectures and authoring articles on the subject. He was a member of the Hidenwood Presbyterian Church. Jim was preceded in death by his parents Evelyn McCoy and Wilbur James Baggs. He is survived by his devoted wife, Jessie Fleta, his two children, Beverly Hornsby and Barbara Baggs, and stepson, Michael A. Holland and his wife Linda, as well as six grandchildren, Charlie Hornsby, David Hornsby and his wife, Emily, Michael Hornsby, Alison Lane Doucet, Bo Yates and her husband, Bobby, Martha Madison and her husband, AJ Gilbert, Meghan Phillips and her husband Michael, Rachel Holland, and great-grandchildren, Grayson and Tatym Doucet, Lauren and Alyssa Yates, Henry Hornsby, and Charley Gilbert. An avid golfer who enjoyed weekly golf games into his early nineties, Jim always armed himself with a few good jokes to entertain his foursome. He was also an accomplished pianist and novice composer. His family will remember him for his generous spirit, his bright smile, and his boundless energy. The family wishes to express its gratitude to Jim's physicians and to Riverside Hospice, Riverside Rehabilitation Institute, and The Newport for their loving care and attention. A visitation will be held at the Peninsula Funeral Home from 6:00-7:00 p.m. on Friday, August 15. Interment will be private, honoring Jim's wishes, on Saturday, August 16, at Peninsula Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
Published in Daily Press on Aug. 14, 2014
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