Clarence (Jack) Leary, Jr. M.D., went peacefully to his rest on January 2, 2012, with his wife, Elsie, of 66 years at his side. He was 90 years of age. Jack was born on June 9, 1921, east of Lodi on Hibbard Lane, which was named for his maternal grand-parents. He was preceded in death by his parents, Clarence Sr. and Jennie Leary; his sister, Beverly; and his daughter Melissa Pahn.
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He attended Harmony Grove School, and graduated from Lodi High in the class of 1939. The family moved to several different towns, but he still "skipped" two grades. In high school he was a runner - and his name was inscribed on one of the trophies on display. On to Pacific Union College, he excelled in Chemistry and was an Assistant Organic Chemistry Instructor. When completing his pre-medical studies he went to Loma Linda University.
Soon World War II was in force. He had started "medicine" and because of his scholastic standing he was chosen by the Army Specialized Training Corps to stay on and finish his training. He went in as a private and completed as a captain. As the war ended, he served in the Veterans Administration.
At this time he met and married Elsie, a student nurse. The wedding took place at "Wee Kirk of the Heather" in Glendale, California.
A few years were spent in "General Practice" in Goldendale, Washington, but the urge to do Orthopedics was strong. Next came a big move to New Orleans, Louisiana, Tulane University. It was a unique experience living there. Then on to Pennsylvania. Amish country was a contrasting experience for children's surgery. Next the trek back to California, Stockton, opening an office there, but commuted to what is now University of California Davis. It was then the Sacramento County Facility. He was in charge of the Orthopedic Department.
During his years of Orthopedic Surgery, here in Lodi he held a number of leadership roles. He served two terms as Chief of Staff at Lodi Memorial Hospital. He was an executive officer of the board - founders of the Lodi Outpatient Surgery Center and a chairman of an early day health Foundation. Dear to his heart was time invested with Loel Center as chairman of the board. He conducted "Stop Smoking Classes" over a period of time. Interested in Children's education, he was on the SDA Elementary School board, also as its chairman. At the Seventh-day Adventist church he taught a Bible Class for thirty years, and was an elder. A colorful mission trip to Columbia, South America was a medical work with colleagues, into the jungle, rivers via dugout canoes.
Later his "Dr. Jack" column in the Lodi News-Sentinel held forth for seven years. He was careful to research items presented.
He enjoyed golf with buddies, had two "holes-in-one" at Woodbridge Golf and Country Club. Getting that Boston Whaler into the Delta was fun. Trips and stays at Sun Valley, Idaho, were much anticipated, the skiing with family and friends - the beauty of the place.
Although so busy, dedicated to his work, his patients, and certainly to his family and friends, he had a warm and loving heart, willing to go the "second mile".
Elsie and the family wish to extend heartfelt gratitude to Fairmont Rehabilitation for their kindness and warmth to him.
Jack's survivors include his wife, Elsie; son Kevin (Heidi) Leary; two daughters Jenanne (Robert) Rodriguez and Shauna (John) Unser. Grandchildren, Chase and Jacqueline Leary, Loni Unser, Trevor and Christopher Phan; two step grandchildren, Jonathan Rodriquez and Erica Hazlett; two greats, Madelina and Christian Hazlett.
In lieu of flowers a suggested memorial: Lodi Educational Endowment Fund (LEEF), benefiting Lodi Academy and Elementary School Scholarships and projects. P.O. Box 272, Lodi, CA 95241.
A memorial service will be held January 28, at 2:30 P.M. at the English Oaks Seventh-day Adventist Church, 1260 W. Century Blvd, Lodi.
Published in Lodi News-Sentinel from Jan. 21 to Jan. 30, 2012