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Ralph GordonCadeusAmerican FlagGORDON

Ralph Gordon, 78, was a simple country boy from Lexington, KY, son of a police officer, Elwood Gordon, and of a homemaker Lucy Gordon. He was very bright and graduated from high school at 16. A member of the community gave him a scholarship for Vanderbilt Medical School after he graduated from the University of Kentucky at age 20. From there he entered a medical residency in North Carolina, then served his country during the Vietnam War as a physician for an impoverished Indian Reservation in Oklahoma, living on the reservation with his young and growing family. He delivered babies, treated the elderly, and tried to meet all of the medical needs of this disenfranchised community. After completing his two-year service in Oklahoma, Dr. Gordon received further residency and fellowship training in pediatrics, with a sub specialty in infectious diseases. He spent most of his career as a Professor of Medicine for Michigan State University, training residents in pediatrics. He was awarded numerous teaching awards and his clinical research added significant knowledge to the diagnosis and treatment of spinal

Meningitis and other diseases afflicting children. Apart from teaching and practicing pediatrics, Dr. Gordon was a Medical Historian, receiving a Master’s Degree in the History of Medicine from the University of Wisconsin during a sabbatical from Michigan State.  After retiring from MSU, Dr. Gordon devoted the rest of his life to researching, writing and lecturing on Civil War Medicine. He was inducted into the prestigious American Osler Society, a preeminent academic membership of physicians and scholars dedicated to the study of the history of medicine.

He enjoyed watching his family grow into the next generation, with four grandchildren who made him very proud. Dr. Gordon also stayed very close to his sister, Pam Johns and was happy to see her become a grandmother.  Dr. Gordon was predeceased by his son, Ralph Clay jr, and leaves behind his son, David Gordon and his family, Yuko, Eriko and Alissa; his daughter Lynn Gordon (Dunphy) and her family, Kevin, Kevin Seamus and Emma; his ex-wife and friend, Liz Gordon; his dear sister Pamela Johns and her growing family including three grandsons, Peyton, Luke and Ellis; and other beloved friends and family.