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Rev. Lawrence A. "Larry" Beyer M.D.

Beyer, Rev. Lawrence ("Larry") A., M.D. Age 89, died peacefully on December 22, 2010, at the Legacy of Preston Hollow. A second generation American who grew up speaking German and English at home, Larry was born to Joseph and Ida Marie Beyer in Moulton, Texas, on June 17, 1921. Larry's grandparents Joseph and Elizabeth Beyer had emigrated from Moravia, Austria, in the early 1900s. Larry graduated from Moulton High School in 1940 and proudly served in the U.S. Navy from 1942 to 1946. As a child, Larry prayed about a vocation. He wanted to become both a doctor and a priest and struggled with choosing between the two. After his service in WWII, Larry's interest in medicine won out. He earned a B.A. in Chemistry from Baylor University in 1946. That same year, on November 29, 1946, Larry married the beautiful Dorothy Sellers at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Waco, Texas. From 1949 to 1953 Larry worked as a pharmaceutical representative for Lederle and Riker Laboratories. From 1953 to 1957 he attended UT Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, Texas. After graduation, from July 1958 to September 1961, he practiced general medicine at the Hereford Medical Clinic in Hereford, Texas. After a brief neurosurgery residency in Richmond, Virginia, Larry and his family moved back to Dallas where he completed a general surgery residency at St. Paul Hospital. Larry practiced medicine as a general surgeon in Dallas, Texas, from 1965 to 1985, holding hospital privileges at Southeastern Methodist, East Dallas Hospital, St. Paul, Baylor Medical Center, Methodist Central, and Charlton Methodist. He was renowned among both patients and peers for his incredible bedside manner. His many certifications and memberships included Diplomat American Board of Surgery, Fellow American College of Surgery, Southwestern Surgical Society, Dallas County Society of General Surgeons, Texas Medical Association, American Medical Association, and Southern Medical Association. In addition to his general surgery practice, Dr. Larry Beyer also served as Chief of Staff of Pleasant Grove Hospital in 1979, Chief of Staff of Southwestern Methodist Hospital from 1983 to 1984, and Vice President of the East Dallas Hospital Board from 1970 to 1973. He received the Charles Duncan, M.D. Award for Quality Patient Care in 1973. In December 1985, he retired from his general surgery practice. On December 10, 1986, Larry lost Dorothy, his wife of 39 years, to a lengthy illness. He returned to medicine for several years to serve as chief of the outpatient clinic at the VA hospital in Marlin, Texas. A member of St. Rita Catholic Church since 1964, with numerous life-long friends among the priests, religious and parishioners, Larry was a Knight of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem, a 4th Degree Knight of Columbus, a member of the Order of Alhambra, and a member of the Serra Club of Metropolitan Dallas. After more than 60 years, God graced Larry with a second vocation. At 72, when most people are considering retirement, Larry attended Sacred Heart School of Theology in Hales Corner, Wisconsin, and was ordained into the Roman Catholic priesthood in May of 1996. One of his greatest joys was returning to Moulton, Texas, as a newly ordained priest and celebrating Mass in St. Joseph's Church, the church of his childhood. After his ordination, Fr. Larry was honored and thrilled to serve as assistant pastor at Prince of Peace Catholic Church for 5 years. These years marked some of the most joyful of Larry's life. The friends he made there sweetened his already remarkable second vocation. He was passionate about administering the sacraments. His two youngest grandchildren were fortunate to be baptized by their remarkable "Daddy Pappa." In 2001, Larry's doctors urged him to slow down, and the Prince of Peace community sadly bid their beloved priest farewell. Although retired, the friends he made at Prince of Peace remained close to Larry for the rest of his life. Larry was preceded in death by his sister Lillie Beyer, his wife Dorothy Evelyn Sellers Beyer, his grandson Jason Beyer, and his daughter Mary Alice Beyer Cline. Larry is survived by his children Stephen, Jonathan, and Thom, by his daughter-in-law (Thom's wife) Julie, as well as by seven grandchildren: Robin, Rebecca, Elizabeth, Andrew, Braden, Zoe, and Jonah Beyer, as well as by 12 great grandchildren. Larry will be missed greatly by those who loved him and will be remembered for his friendship, his passion for his vocations, and his love of his dogs. The vigil and visitation will be at 7:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 26, at Prince of Peace Catholic Church in Plano, Texas. The funeral mass will be at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, December 27, at St. Rita Catholic Church in Dallas, Texas. Immediately following the funeral, Larry will be laid to rest at the Calvary Hill Cemetery located at 3235 Lombardy Lane in Dallas.

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Published in Dallas Morning News on Dec. 26, 2010
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