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Arthur Carlson Jr.

Arthur William
Carlson, Jr.

Arthur William (Bill) Carlson, Jr., M.D., passed away suddenly on March 11, 2013, due to a severe illness. Bill was born in Alameda, CA on April 10, 1936, the oldest of four children of Arthur William (Art) Carlson and Evaline (Couchie) Otis. During his youth, Bill was an avid roller skater, ice skater, and swimmer, and loved to hike and camp in the Sierras with his Boy Scout troop, in which he became an Eagle Scout. Bill loved the outdoors so much that he spent a summer at Yosemite National Park pumping gas to be close to the wilderness he loved, and to finance his hiking and camping habit. Bill attended Piedmont High School, in Piedmont, California, where he was an active member of the Kimmers, and was a manager of the football team, along with his identical twin brother, Ed.


After graduating from Piedmont High School in 1954, Bill attended the University of California at Berkeley (Cal), where he studied biology and was a member of Psi Upsilon fraternity. Bill also was a member of the Cal water polo team and swim team, for which he received a "Big C." After graduating from Cal, Bill attended medical school at McGill University in Montreal, Canada. At McGill, Bill swam on the varsity swim team with Canadian Olympians Cameron Grout and Richard Pound. He also met his wife of 49 years at McGill, Penelope Anne (Penny) Wright, who passed away in November, 2010.


Bill trained in obstetrics and gynecology (ObGyn) at Highland General Hospital in Oakland, CA. After completing his residency in 1968, Bill and Penny and their four children moved to Reno. Upon arriving in Reno, Bill first practiced with a small ObGyn partnership before opening his own practice. Due to his exceptional work ethic and skill, but most particularly due to his wonderful smile, his gentle demeanor, and his sincere devotion to his patients and the practice of medicine, Bill created a bustling ObGyn practice with multiple partners that delivered a fair share of Reno's children during his 20 years of practice. Bill retired in 1988.


After several years of retirement, Bill had had enough and began serving as Chairman of the Board of Governors at Washoe Medical Center. Never one to sit still, after stepping down from the Board of Governors, Bill worked in Carson City performing disability assessments until early 2011.


In his limited free time, Bill loved to hike, fish, and hunt and to keep his kids busy running a menagerie of dogs, cats, horses, cows, sheep, chickens, turkeys, geese, pheasant and chukar. Bill loved outdoor traveling adventures and went on many memorable hunting, fishing, rafting, and skiing trips with his family and friends. After Bill's kids graduated, Bill and Penny traveled extensively in Canada and Europe and Bill continued his passion for hunting by going on several "shooting" expeditions in England and Scotland. Bill also was a long-time member of the Bohemian Club and the Society of California Pioneers. In the early 1990s, Bill joined a Masters Swimming club and continued to swim regularly until about 2008. Although he stopped swimming regularly, Bill continued his workouts with frequent Pilates sessions until shortly before his death.


Bill will be greatly missed and will always be remembered for his deep love for Penny, his love for the practice of medicine, and his unconditional generosity and kindness.


Bill is survived by his father, Art, of Ridgefield, WA; his identical twin brother, Ed, of Novato, CA; his sister, Susan Bergeson of Ridgefield, WA; his four children: Andrew of Albany, NY, Ed of Portland, OR, Grace Anne Yoo of San Diego, CA, and Bill (Flipper) of Shanghai, China; and his seven grandchildren: Sophie, Rachel, Grant, Dyllon, Pierce, Duncan, and Alex.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on Mar. 24, 2013
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