Milford Wyman
1928 - 2021
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July 2, 1928 - January 3, 2021 Milford G. Wyman's humble beginnings in the small Southern Illinois town of Du Quoin belied his ultimate professional accomplishments that revolutionized acute coronary care in community hospitals in the United States. Dr. Wyman's approach was two pronged: First, through the aggressive use of cardiac arrhythmia drugs, his algorithms prevented sudden death in heart attack victims. Second, through a rigorous educational program Dr. Wyman empowered an underutilized resource in the care of these patients: Highly trained coronary care unit nurses making therapeutic decisions in a manner that heretofore had been under the exclusive purview of doctors. Du Quoin not only produced Milford but also a number of other persons of accomplishment, including his predeceased wife Rae June Decker Wyman (a family law specialist and civil rights activist) and his predeceased brother Gene (a distinguished corporate lawyer and the National Chairman of the Democratic Party during the 1960s). Milford would attribute their outsized success, coming from a town that had primarily been known for its coal strip mining fields, to an educator and speech coach, Paul Hibbs. Under Hibbs tutelage the Du Quoin speech team went on to win more state and national accolades than any other high school of comparable size in the US, and the standards of excellence he imbued to his team members prepared them for future successes. Milford also proved an unlikely football star as a 132 pound defensive lineman known for game saving tackles that came with their share of injuries (after much cajoling his father Abe, who thought football a barbaric sport, finally attended a game during which Milford was rendered unconscious after blocking a punt with his face). As an undergraduate at Northwestern University Milford excelled in his premed curriculum (but when he attempted to join the football team the legendary head coach Pappy Waldorf wisely counseled Milford that the inherent risks could prove a much greater barrier to his medical ambitions than his grade point average). Milford's betrothed Rae also attended Northwestern as a drama major, and they wed in the Northwestern Chapel prior to his enrollment at the University of Illinois medical school. After medical school Dr. Wyman began his internal medicine internship at Los Angeles County hospital. His residency was at the University of Cincinnati, where Milford and Rae's first son Mark (who would go on to become an entertainment industry lawyer/executive) was born. Milford and the family then returned to Los Angeles and he worked for the Epidemiology Intelligence Service before beginning his cardiology fellowship at USC. The births of Michael (destined to become a cardiologist like his father), and Matthew (now a partner in a large corporate real estate law firm) followed. The Wymans settled into the South Bay suburb of San Pedro in 1959 (later moving to Palos Verdes where Milford and Rae would eventually live out their retirement years), and it was at San Pedro Peninsula Hospital where Dr. Wyman opened the first Coronary Care Unit in Los Angeles in 1966, and made his mark in the field of cardiology. He was also a clinical Professor of medicine at USC and a prolific contributor to national medical journals. Milford is also survived by his daughters-in-law (Holly, Cathi and Jacqui), his grandchildren (Sarah, Andrew, Emma, Jenna, Max, Jack, Joel, Charlie, Siena and Julian) and their families (including great-grandchildren Addison, June, Carter and Paloma), along with his brother Mel, his sister-in-law Rosalind, and his beloved constant companion for his final years, Mardalia. His impressive professional and academic accomplishments notwithstanding, he was devoted to his family and took his greatest pride in their accomplishments. Services will be held at an appropriate time after the global pandemic has receded. Donations in Milford's name can be made to Physicians for Social Responsibility (of which he was a proud early member) and Doctors Without Borders. McNerney's Mortuary 310-832-8351

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Published in Palos Verdes Peninsula News on Feb. 17, 2021.
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2 entries
February 23, 2021
To the Wyman family - My condolences on our loss. I know my Dad respected Dr. Wyman as they worked on the hospital board together and as a patient. You can be proud of his enormous contributions to our San Pedro community. May you be surrounded and comforted by the love of family and friends during this difficult time.
Melanie Real
February 20, 2021
I was saddened to read of Dr. Wyman's passing. I worked at San Pedro Peninsula Hospital for over 16 years. I interacted with Dr. Wyman often especially when he was on the Hospital Foundation Board of Trustees. He was a true leader and an excellent physician. I am grateful that I was able to see him pre-pandemic at the market and we gave each other a big hug. My deepest sympathies to the entire Wyman family on your loss of a great man.

Mary Gimenez-Caulder
Mary Gimenez-Caulder
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