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Dr. Richard Clyde Sherman


1925 - 2015 Obituary Condolences
Dr. Richard Clyde Sherman Obituary

Dr. Richard Clyde Sherman, a 59-year resident of Alamogordo, passed away on Jan. 20, 2015, after several years of challenging physical issues and declining health.

He was born in Hutchinson, Kan., on March 14, 1925.
He lived in Bethany, Mo.; Oklahoma City and Cushing, Okla., and Kansas City, Mo., where he graduated from Kansas City High School in 1942. While in high school in Kansas City, he was the Cadet Colonel for all of the ROTC programs in Kansas City.

After graduation from high school, Richard joined the U.S. Marine Corps and was assigned to San Diego for boot camp training. Following graduation from Marine boot camp, he was assigned to the U.S.S. West Virginia which was stationed in Bremmerton, Wash. Since World War II was underway, he soon shipped out to the Pacific war action. He was trained as an anti-aircraft gunner while on the U.S.S. West Virginia. His ship was hit twice by Japanese Kamikaze pilots, when the ship was damaged and several were killed. The second hit was on Easter 1945 with a 500-pound bomb that miraculously failed to explode. A suicide note was found on the dead pilot, indicating that he intended to blow up the U.S.S. West Virginia. From Tokyo Bay, Richard witnessed the surrender of the Japanese from the U.S.S. West Virginia, and he also witnessed the raising of the American flag on Iwo Jima.

While serving as a Marine during the war, Richard was inspired to return to the United States and pursue a career as a medical doctor. He applied for pre-med at Baylor University in Waco, Texas, after the war.
It was in Waco, Texas, on a bus going to school that Richard met his sweetheart and the love of his life, Tina Dann. Richard pursued Tina after he witnessed her giving up her seat on a bus for an African American lady. They were married in Carlsbad on August 11, 1950, just before Richard began medical school at the University of Texas in Galveston, Texas.
Medical school was tough for Richard, as he usually had several jobs on top of class work. He and Tina had their first two of their four children before he completed medical school in 1954.
His residency and internship meant a move to El Paso, Texas. While completing his residency in El Paso, he was continuously contacted and challenged by Dr. Park Borgeson and asked to come to Alamogordo to begin his medical practice. Richard and Tina accepted the challenge, and in 1956, moved their family of 4 to Alamogordo to begin a medical career in Alamogordo with Dr. Borgeson. Eventually Dr. Borgeson and Dr. Sherman became long-time medical partners, where they served as family doctors to the people of Alamogordo and the surrounding area for 30 years.

Dr. Sherman continued to serve as a locum tenums doctor with Comp Health for 10 more years by filling in around the country for doctors in mostly small towns. When a doctor wanted a vacation or the town needed a temporary doctor, he and Tina traveled to Maine, Vermont, New England, Virginia, North Dakota, Indiana, Texas, Arizona, Montana, Utah and Alaska.
Sometimes they would live in the doctor's house, whom they were replacing, and sometimes even cared for their dogs that were left at the doctor's home. Sometimes it was an ideal situation and other times, it was an extremely difficult, but traveling to be a doctor in such diverse locations and situations was rewarding for both Dr. Sherman and Tina.
When it was time to hang up the traveling doctor routine, Dr. Sherman spent three more years serving as an emergency room physician at Holloman Air Force Base. He spent two more years filling in back at his old clinic in Alamogordo with Dr. Brent Aday. He maintained his medical qualifications until 2011 even though he was not still practicing. He continued to think of himself as a medical doctor even up to the end of his life.

Sherman is survived by his wife of more than 64 years, Tina, his oldest son Dann and his wife Wendy Sherman, who live in Pleasanton, Calif.; daughter Becky Lavanchy of Alamogordo, who also lived in Boston, Mass. for the past 25 years; son John and his wife Tamsen Sherman, who live in Santa Fe and by daughter Kim and her husband Lucky Wirtz, also of Alamogordo.
He is also survived by his only sister, Helen Goddard, who lives in Waco, Texas and by his grandchildren, Christy and Jake Williamson of San Diego; Jeremiah and Crystal Zurenda of Elk City, Okla.; Lt. Greg and Meredith Sherman of Virginia Beach, Va.; Tanya and Jake Rochell of Duncan, Okla.; Brandon Bigej of Portland, Ore.; Brianne Bigej of Albuquerque, NM; Brock & Hannah Bigej of Oregon City, Ore.; Brita Bigej of Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.; Jalen Bigej of Carvalis, Ore.; Jarett Bigej of Albuquerque, and Tiana Sherman of Santa Fe.
He is also survived by his great-grandson, Wyatt Cade Rochell and Kaia Nunley of Albuquerque.

Pallbearers will be Walt Boroski, Eddie Norell, John Jenkins, Jeff Boroski, Jeremiah Zurenda, and Lt. Greg Sherman. Honorary pallbearers will be Charles Walker, John Thomas, Dr. Darryl Leslie, Dr. BrentAday, and Bud Martin.

Anyone wanting to make contributions in memory of Dr. Sherman, in lieu of flowers, can contribute to Dr. Sherman's local church, The Christian Church, 1300 Hawaii,Alamogordo, NM, where contributions will be used for a special project in memory of Dr. Sherman.

Visitation will be held at Hamilton O'Dell Funeral Home Chapel from 5 - 7 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 26. The funeral service will be at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 27, at Hamilton O'Dell Funeral Home Chapel.
Interment will follow at Monte Vista Cemetery with military honors provided by the US Marine Corps.

The Sherman family has entrusted their loved one to the care of Hamilton-O'Dell Funeral Home.
To sign the online register book, please visit www.hamiltonodell.com.
Published in Alamogordo Daily News from Jan. 25 to Feb. 24, 2015
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