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Dr. William Alton Doering died November 2, 2011 at the age of 97.
Born June 19, 1914 to William and Virginia (Young) Doering, William (Bill) grew up in Belfield, North Dakota, with his older brothers Herbert and Harwood and graduated from Belfield High School in 1932.
Bill graduated from Dickinson State Teacher's College with a B.A. degree in 1936. In 1985, Bill was inducted into the Dickinson State College Athletic Hall of Fame for athletic achievement 1930's.
Selected from the small colleges as a Little All-American during the Depression years, Bill was drafted by the Chicago Bears. When he was told the franchise paid only $25 per game, Bill decided to stay in the field of education and become a science teacher.
It was as an educator in Sentinel Butte, North Dakota that he met Anne Burhans, and the couple was married on June 8, 1937 in Glendive, Montana. The Doerings had three children, Polly, Peggy and David.
Bill later attended the College of Idaho, the University of Idaho (Education and Teaching), and the University of Washington (B.S. degree) pursuing an advanced degree in administration. He became the superintendent of schools at Wendell, Idaho, becoming the state's youngest superintendent. During World War II, he was not only the superintendent, but also teacher, coach and principal.
At the end of the war, Wendell's family doctor encouraged Bill to enter the field of medicine. Because Idaho had no medical school, but had reciprocity with Nebraska, Bill and his family moved to Omaha. He graduated from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine in May, 1949, and spent a year of internship at Methodist Hospital in Omaha.
Preferring the medical career of a small town and rural area doctor, the Doering family moved to Franklin, Nebraska in early July, 1950, when Bill joined the practice of Dr. David Rosenberg.
During his more than a half century in Franklin, Bill served his community in many capacities: a member of the Franklin school board for 12 years, president for 8; a founding member of the Franklin Country Club in 1961; a member of the Franklin Chamber of Commerce; a promoter and backer of the community's home for senior citizens; Medical Advisor of that facility; Chief of Staff of the Franklin County Hospital from 1953 until his retirement; physician to the County Mental Health Board; Health Officer for the City and County; and a 60 year member of the First United Methodist Church.
As a physician, Bill was a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, and the 1974-1976 president of the Nebraska Chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians. During the 1980's, he was a member of the University of Nebraska's Advisory Board and helped organize and implement Nebraska's outstate preceptorship program in family practice for sophomores in medical school who might have an interest in practicing in the rural areas. For 19 years Bill volunteered his services as Doctor of the Day in the Nebraska state legislature. The Nebraska Chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians honored Bill as the 1984-1985 Nebraska Family Physician of the Year. Bill's family always knew his passion in life was serving others, as the Hippocratic Oath was on the mantle and a caduceus was in the kitchen tile.
In March, 1998, the Franklin County Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees honored Bill for 48 years of service to the sick and injured of the County.
A devoted father, grandfather, and great grandfather, Bill always enjoyed the company of his family and always made an effort to attend the activities of his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
When he found time, Bill enjoyed hunting, fishing, boating, golfing, Nebraska football, and his dog, Bart. His other interests included being a Master Mason for over 60 years. He was the Jordan Medal recipient of Franklin Masonic Lodge. He also belonged to the Tehama Shrine in Hastings, Nebraska. During the past few years, Bill and David spent time with a friend's horses. Bill loved to brush and talk to them.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, brothers, wife, and son-in-law Gil Feis. Left to cherish his full life are his daughters, Polly Feis of Lincoln, Nebraska, Peggy and husband Reynold McMeen of Broken Bow, Nebraska, and son, David Doering of Franklin, Nebraska, five grandchildren, Mary Anne Karczewski, William B. Feis, Stephanie A. Holcomb, Jeffrey R. McMeen and Jeremy W. McMeen, 13 great grandchildren, and many other relatives and friends.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations go to a person or place of your choosing in Bill's name.
Services at: Franklin United Methodist Church, Franklin, Nebraska.
Time of Service: Thursday, November 10th, 2011 at 11:00 AM.
Clergy: Rev. Nancy Leonard
Private Family Burial at: Greenwood Cemetery, Franklin, Nebraska
Book Signing: From 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM, Wednesday, November 9th, 2011 at Hutchins Funeral Home, Franklin, Nebraska.
Hutchins Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.
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