BANOV, JR., Leon Dr. Leon Banov, Jr. died March 26, 2007, in Charleston, S.C. Those who knew him will miss his kindness, wisdom, and big smile. He lived a full life, treated his patients well, and showed care and generosity toward his family and friends. We were lucky to have him in our lives, and he leaves an open spot in our hearts. Dr. Banov, also known as Doc, is preceded in death by his beloved wife, Rita Landesman Banov, his brother, Morton, and his sister, Roslyn Banov Wyman. Dr. Banov was born Dec. 19, 1914, on Mill Street in Charleston, the son of Dr. Leon Banov, Charleston County's Public Health Director for nearly 50 years, and Minnie Monash Banov. He graduated from the High School of Charleston, the College of Charleston, and the Medical College of South Carolina. Following an internship and residencies in Baltimore, Washington, and Cleveland, Ohio, he practiced proctology in Charleston for 55 years. He also served as Clinical Professor of Surgery and Clinical Professor Emeritus of Surgery at the Medical University of South Carolina. He was president of the Piedmont Proctologic Society, the Charleston County Medical Society, and the Coastal Medical Society. He was committed to his field of medicine. In 1973 he was selected to be on the first federal government panel on hemorrhoidal drugs for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration the first such federal research project. In March 1978, he testified to the National Commission on Digestive Diseases, The United States spent $50 million to study the backside of the moon that never caused any of us any trouble, but not one red cent to study the backsides of our own suffering people. The quote was publicized in the press across the country, and he remained proud that he had shed light on a topic considered unmentionable. At the same time he was quick to joke about his profession and called himself the Rear Admiral. Dr. Banov became a prolific writer on the history of proctology and surgery and was active in the Waring Library Society, serving as its president. He wrote more than 60 scientific and medical history articles that were published in surgical and medical journals and books. He was a devoted member of Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim and served as its president, as did his wife, Rita. He was a member of the Rotary Club of Charleston for dozens of years and was president in 1985. He was a founding director of The Bank of South Carolina and served on its board for many years. After becoming an Eagle Scout in high school in 1929, Dr. Banov became a lifelong contributor to the health of Boy Scouts locally, and in 1988 was honored with its Distinguished Eagle Scout Award. He was an avid chess player and was twice chess champion of Charleston. He loved traveling, photography and fine dining. Most of all, he was a gentleman who loved his family. He and Rita, whom he nicknamed Miss Toots, were married for nearly 58 years. Together, they raised two children and were role models to their four grandchildren, nephews, nieces and countless others. Dr. Banov is survived by his son, Alan Banov of Kensington, Md.; daughter, Jane Banov Bergen and husband Lester, of Arlington, Va.; grandchildren Jessica L. Banov of Fayetteville, N.C.; Leah S. Bergen of Washington, D.C.; Rachel K. Banov of Washington, D.C.; and Joel H. Bergen of Los Angeles, Calif.; daughter-in-law Marla Banov of Kensington, Md.; and brothers-in-law, nieces, nephews and cousins. The family gratefully acknowledges the wonderful women who cared for Dr. Banov over the past five years. They treated him like family, and their devotion is deeply appreciated. Dr. Banov's funeral will be at K. K. Beth Elohim at eleven o'clock, Thursday, March 29, 2007. Burial will be in the Beth Elohim Cemetery, Huguenin Avenue, North Charleston. Friends may call at J. HENRY STUHR, INC., DOWNTOWN CHAPEL Wednesday between five and seven o'clock. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to K. K. Beth Elohim, 90 Hasell St., Charleston, S.C. 29401, or the Rita L. and Leon Banov Jr., M.D. Fund of the Coastal Community Foundation, 90 Mary Street, Charleston, S.C. 29403. Visit our guestbook at www.charleston.net/deaths.
Published in Charleston Post & Courier on Mar. 28, 2007.