Gene Harland Abels, M.D., 82, passed away surrounded by his loving family on Sunday, July 6, 2014, in his hometown of Gallipolis. He was born March 5, 1932, in Chillicothe, to the Rev. Harland Hubert and Helen Burdine Abels.
As the son of a minister, Gene grew up in several small towns around Ohio, including Cedarville, Jamestown and Spencerville. He graduated from Spencerville High School in 1950. Following high school, with several scholarships and much hard work, Gene attended The Ohio State University, where he received his bachelor's degree from the College of Arts and Sciences in 1954, cum laude, followed by his medical degree from the College of Medicine in 1957. He was a member of a professional fraternity: Alpha Epsilon Delta, and a Greek fraternity: Phi Kappa Tau. He has also been a life member of the OSU Alumni Association since 1971.
After completing his residency in Georgia, Gene moved his young family back to Ohio. In 1961, Gene launched his career with Holzer Hospital, where he specialized in cardiology and co-founded the cardiac care unit along with Jacob Wineberger, M.D. and Sharon Eubanks, R.N. He co-founded The Medical Plaza in 1970, along with James A. Kemp, M.D. and Gerald E. Vallee, M.D, and retired from there in 2009, after more than 50 years of medical practice.
He participated in the Gallia County Medical Society, The Ohio State Medical Association, and the American Medical Association. Gene truly enjoyed his work and cared for his many patients!
Gene married fellow OSU alumni Marjorie Jean Allyn on a snowy Christmas day in 1956, in her hometown of Ironton; they have been happily married for 57 years. They are members of Grace United Methodist Church.
He enjoyed spending time with his family and friends, laughing and telling jokes, traveling, playing golf and basketball, singing and listening to music, and reading in his relentless pursuit of knowledge. He was dedicated to public service. He served on the school board for Gallipolis City Schools from 1980-83, and was president of the board in 1982; the City Commission of Gallipolis from 1998-2001; and as the house doctor serving jail inmates. He, Ike Wiseman and Ron Carmichael were the driving force in the development of the Cliffside Golf Club, where he served as the first president of the board.
Gene was preceded in death by his parents; his sister Helen Gloria Abels; his son Bradley Steven Abels; and many dear friends.
Gene is survived by his loving wife Jeannie Abels; his daughters Barbara Abels, Beth Abels and Sara Abels; his brother George Hubert (Ruth) Abels, of Fort Wayne, Ind., and their sons Gary, Gregg (Linda), Glenn, Bob and Guy (Denise) Abels; his grandchildren Brad Cline, and Alex and Lani Abels; and many other beloved relatives and friends.
A Celebration of Life will be 11 a.m. Wednesday, July 9, 2014, at Grace United Methodist Church, 600 Second Ave., Gallipolis. Gene will be interred at a later date at Bellefonte Memorial Cemetery in Flatwoods, Ky., in his wife's family plot.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to: Friends of Gallia County Animals, P.O. Box 252, Rio Grande, OH; Bossard Memorial Library; Ariel Theatre; French Art Colony; or a
Condolences may be left on Gene H. Abels online guest book at mccoymoore.com.