Dr. George Harges Yard, an unforgettable character in the Flagstaff community, passed away on December 24, 2020 at the age of 90. George was born in Bisbee on February 28, 1930 to Philip and Esther Yard. George was equal parts rancher and doctor, his love for the great outdoors matched only by his passion for medicine. He was a caring gentleman, generous with his wisdom, and fearless in his convictions.
George grew up on a farm outside of Bisbee where he first became a cowman. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout and was a delegate to the first Arizona Boys State. He graduated from Bisbee High School in 1948. With the aid of a Phelps Dodge Scholarship George attended the University of Arizona and was a champion bull rider, a state champion wrestler, and forever banded with the Sigma Chi Fraternity. George received a Doctorate of Medicine in 1956 from Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago.
George served as Captain in the Army Medical Corp in West Germany from 1956 to 1960. He received the Army Commendation Medal for meritorious service and continued as Captain in the Army Medical Corp Reserve from 1960 to 1968. In 1960, George and family moved to Flagstaff where he practiced medicine for nearly thirty-five years as a Family Doctor. He was honored to have delivered several thousand Flagstaff babies including ALL of his grandchildren! Doc Yard ended his private practice in 1994 and became a Clinic Physician at William's Hospital. He retired from medicine in 2002 at age 72.
In 1975, George married the love of his life, Sharon Ann Cornelison. Together they shared everything; practicing medicine, ranching, wagoning, and playing with family and friends. One of George's famous sayings was: "The raising of cattle is a congenital defect!" Over the years, George and Sharon owned three different Arizona ranches; the X-Triangle ranch south of Flagstaff, the Bar-X ranch near Young, and finally the Y Bar D ranch in Perkinsville where they built their dream home along the Verde River and lived for over 25 years. George and Sharon sold the Y Bar D ranch in 2019 and relocated back to Flagstaff.
George is survived by his wife, Sharon; children Michael Yard (Elizabeth), Jennifer Yard, Stephanie Yard (Ted Cornutt), and Renee Casswell; grandchildren Anita Diaz, David Diaz Jr. (Aprille), Shanna Casswell, Charlie Moody, Carlye Casswell, and Trey Casswell; great grandchildren Adam Griffin, Katrina Diaz, and Allison Briasco; as well as countless friends and extended family. He was preceded in death by his brother Philip Yard Jr. and son George Thomas Yard.
George cut a wide and wonderful swath that touched so many lives.
Happy trails to you, until we meet again!
A small private service was held at Citizens Cemetery with military honors where he was delivered to the graveside in his covered wagon. George was blessed to celebrate his 90th birthday with family and friends prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. A memorial celebration of his life may be held in the future.
Donations in George Yards's memory can be made by mail to: National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Arizona Chapter, 5025 E Washington St., Suite 102, Phoenix, AZ 85034-2005 or thru their website: https://mssociety.donordrive.com/campaign/Dr--George-Yard-Memorial-Fund
Memories and condolences can be shared at www.norvelowensmortuary.com