Roy Pelham FINNEY Jr.

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FINNEY, Roy Pelham, Jr., was born on December 7, 1924, in Gaffney, South Carolina. He grew up in Spartanburg and Newberry, South Carolina, and graduated from Newberry High School in 1942. Young Roy had a fascination with mechanical and electrical devices. He had a basement workshop where he made various electromechanical devices, including telephones and radios. Roy Finney briefly attended college before joining the Army Air Corps at age eighteen near the end of World War II, serving as an aerial photographer in and around Dakar, Senegal. During this period, he initiated his newly found passion for underwater exploration, diving on many coral reefs in western Africa. As part of his enthusiasm for the relatively new sport of skin and scuba diving, he applied his mechanical abilities to the development of novel underwater camera housings and underwater re-breathing apparatus. While there he made a self-contained, underwater diving device consisting of three tanks carried on the back. This was at a time when the aqua lung was completely unknown outside occupied France. Some of his ideas were so advanced that at several underwater equipment expositions in the late 1940s, he interacted as a peer with none other than the famous ocean explorer Jacques Yves Cousteau. He was honorably discharged as a corporal, and returned to the US in 1945. Upon his return from the war, he re-enrolled in Clemson College, and transferred to Wofford College (Spartanburg, SC) in 1947. After receiving his bachelor's degree in 1948, he was accepted into medical school at the Medical College of South Carolina in Charleston. He graduated with the top group in his class in 1952, and secured a prestigious urological residency at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. During his intern year and thereafter, he worked on an ultrasonic disintegrater which used focused ultrasonic energy to break kidney stones. This device was successful but financial and time constraints associated with my residency prevented him from pursuing this further. He then accepted another residency in Shelbyville, Indiana, followed by a urological surgery residency, again at Johns Hopkins.Dr. Roy P. Finney began his medical practice in 1957 at the Watson Clinic in Lakeland, Florida. He was then invited to join a new urological practice in Tampa, Florida, in 1957, based out of Tampa General Hospital. His many appointments while in private practice included Chief of Urology at St. Joseph's Hospital in Tampa, Florida, from 1962-74. Following his retirement from private practice, he held the following appointments: Professor of Surgery (Urology) and Chief of the Division of Urology at the University of South Florida in Tampa from 1974-82; Chief of the Urology Section at the V.A. Hospital in Tampa from 1980-84; and Professor of Clinical Urology at the University of South Florida in Tampa from 1984-2000. Dr. Finney practiced urological surgery at a high level for 30 years, during which time his lifetime interest in mechanics and electronics was put to practical use in his chosen profession. Dr. Finney invented, developed, and tested numerous urological devices for human implantation, including many iterations of uretal and urethral stents. His mechanical abilities combined with his knowledge of the human body was somewhat unique in the urological field at the time, and his inventions resulted in his being granted numerous patents, which were licensed by major pharmaceutical companies.Throughout his life, Roy Finney developed many interests outside his chosen profession. Roy was a proud member of the Sons of the American Revolution, and had traced his ancestry back to England and /Scotland in the early 1600s. He was keenly interested in geneology, among his numerous other interests such as amateur radio, consumer electronics, European history, and boating. Continuing his earlier interest regarding the development of underwater equipment, in the late 1950's he designed, built ,and successfully tested a mixed gas rebreather diving device which increased the time a person could remain under water by a factor of 2. He received another patent for this device, and a similar device is still in use today, primarily by the military. Roy Pelham Finney, Jr., is survived by his loving wife of 50 years, Kay Harkness Finney; four sons, Wright C. Finney (wife Janice), James M. L. Finney (wife Pam), P. Gray Finney (wife Jan), Kevin K. Finney (Chris); one daughter, Joella F. Markham, (husband Bobby); eight grandchildren; several cousins, and many wonderful friends. We will all miss his towering intellect, engaging storytelling, and his love for his family, his friends, and life itself. A gathering will be from 10-11:00 a.m., Monday, February 18, 2013 at Merritt Funeral Home, Spring Hill Chapel, with services beginning at 11:00 a.m. Interment will remain private. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the of Hernando County. Arrangements By Merritt Funeral Home Spring Hill, Chapel (352) 696-6649 "Family Owned and Operated" www.merrittfuneral.com

Funeral Home
Merritt Funeral Home and Crematory Spring Hill Chapel
4095 Mariner Boulevard Spring Hill, FL 34609
(352) 686-6649
Funeral Home Details
Published in TBO.com from Feb. 17 to Feb. 24, 2013
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