Paul G.H. Wolber, MD, 95

May 24, 2010

MAY 2, 1915-MAY 21, 2010

Paul G.H. Wolber, MD, died Friday, May 21, 2010, at Washington County Hospital, in Hagerstown.

Born May 2, 1915, in Pittsburgh, Pa., Paul, known to many as "Doc," was the son of the late Lutheran Reverend Henry Frederick and Wilhelmina Amanda (Braun) Wolber.

Paul lived in Weisberg, Ind., from 1920-26, then moved to Marion, Ohio, where he attended a one-room school from 1926 to 1928. In 1932, he graduated third in his class from Cardington High School, where he participated in Spanish club, orchestra, basketball and track. Paul continued his education attending Capital University in Ohio from 1932 to 1936, ranking in the top 10, and participated in the debate club, Spanish club, baseball and track. After college, Paul taught in Ohio Public Schools from 1936 to 1942, during which he coached basketball. In 1941, while teaching, he earned a master's degree in secondary school administration from Ohio State University.


Paul's military service was extensive. After entering the Army in 1942, he was stationed at the U.S. Artillery Training Center, Fort Sill, Okla. He graduated from Officer Candidate School, was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant and assigned to Military Intelligence School at Fort Ritchie, Md. In 1943, he was briefly assigned to duty at Army Command and General Staff School, and returned to Fort Ritchie and was appointed chief instructor, Army Intelligence Corps. In December 1944, Paul was assigned to the headquarters of Gen. MacArthur, Pacific Theater of (Intelligence) Operations until the end of the hostilities.

He was released from active duty in May 1946, when he was assigned to Army Ready Reserves from 1946-1975, 10 years of which were served as commanding officer of a Selective Service reserve unit in Hagerstown, Md. He was then transferred to inactive reserve with the rank of colonel.

At a social function at Fort Richie, Paul met Anna Jane Rudisill, whom he married in 1943. Upon release from active duty in 1946, he opened a men's retail clothier in Hagerstown, with his father-in-law, Kenneth Rudisill, which he continued to operate for two years following Kenneth's sudden death in 1947.

Paul and Jane had three children while living in Hagerstown (born 1947, 1948, 1949).

The business was sold in 1950, and Paul returned to the classroom, enrolling at Ohio State University in pre-med on the GI bill.

He was admitted to medical school in 1952 and graduated in 1956, serving an internship at White Cross Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, from 1957 through 1960, returning to Hagerstown to serve as medical editor at W.F. Prior Medical Publishing Co. (purchased by Harper and Row 10 years later). Here he served as chief of publications for medical texts and journals, contributed numerous articles for publication and represented publishers at conventions for more than 18 years.

After resigning from Harper and Row in 1977, Paul accepted a position as post surgeon at the U.S. Army Clinic, Fort Ritchie, Md., retiring the position in 1982.

Before and continuing into retirement, Dr. Wolber was a strong advocate for environmental issues and the right to bear arms.

He served as president of the Washington Federation of Sportsmen's Club for 10 years, contributing weekly columns on issues relating to conservation or outdoor ethics.

Paul has been cited by Field and Stream Magazine, The Izaak Walton League and other conservation groups for his efforts in a vast array of environmental initiatives. Dr. Wolber was an avid fisherman and hunter his entire life, owning his first .22-caliber at age 6. As a certified NRA hunter safety instructor, he taught more than 1,000 students. "Doc," often two or three times a week, was in pursuit of fin, fur or feathers!

In addition to his love of outdoors (hunting and fishing), Paul remained active in both his profession and his community: taught anatomy and physiology at Hagerstown Business College; served on the Board of Citizens for the Protection of Washington County and Senior Citizens Physical Fitness Advisory Board at HCC; instructed ESOL classes at Trinity Lutheran Church, where he was a member since 1942; held a Governor's Appointment to the Local Emergency Planning Commission; was editor of the Washington County Medical Society for more than 10 years and was a charter and/or life member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Medical Assoc., American Legion, Retired Officers Association and Izaak Walton League; also belonged to and supported WC Historical Society, Natural Farmland Trust, Environmental Defense Fund, Natural Resource Defense Council, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, National Rifle Assoc., Gun Owners of America, North American Rod and Gun Club and Fountain Head Country Club. It is understated to say that both prior to and after his retirement, Dr. Wolber was an extremely proactive and "involved" individual.

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