Dr. Robert Magee, retired physician of El Dorado Springs, MO, passed away at his home on May 28, 2021, at the age of 94. He was preceded in death by his loving wife, Rosemary (Francka) Magee, in 2019.
Born in Springfield, MO, on August 27, 1926, to Gladys Hutchens Magee and Russell Dean Magee, Robert grew up in Warrensburg with his older sister, Patsy Deane (Magee) Turner. Bob, as he was known, graduated from Warrensburg High School in 1944 and went on to attend Tulane University in New Orleans, where he served in the US Navy Reserve from 1944 to 1945, before graduating in 1948. He then attended Tulane University Medical School through the U.S. Navy’s V-12 Accelerated Officer Program, graduating in 1950. From there he completed his medical internship at Kansas City General Hospital (1951), followed by one year of surgical residency there before being commissioned a Lieutenant JG in the US Navy Medical Corp. He was sent to join the 1st Marine Division in Panmunjom, South Korea, in December 1952. There he took care of wounded Marines in the Collecting and Clearing Station, “Easy Med”. After the war, he continued his service at the US Naval Hospital in Pensacola, FL, from 1953-1954.
Dr. Magee began his general medical practice in El Dorado Springs in 1954, joining two older doctors who retired shortly thereafter, leaving him as the only practicing physician in town for several years. Dr. Magee met the love of his life, Rosemary Francka, a nurse, at a dance in Springfield, MO, and they were married at St. Agnes Cathedral, in Springfield, in November 1955. Dr. Magee provided home visits to surrounding areas and rural family medicine in a town without a hospital until Cedar County Memorial Hospital was completed in 1960. Dr. Magee then served as the hospital’s first Chief of Medical Staff. Rosemary supported her husband as the wife of a country doctor and as his nurse and later volunteered at the new hospital before it was completely staffed.
In his medical practice, Dr. Magee enjoyed delivering babies (some on kitchen tables covered with newspaper), performing surgeries (often following farm accidents or other emergencies), and seeing community folks get well again. He retired from medical practice in 1991.
Outside of his years of medical practice, he enjoyed hunting, fishing, black-powder gunsmithing, woodworking, and contributing to his church, St. Elizabeth’s, with his wife, Rosemary. He was also an active member of the local Lion’s Club and an original investor in the Country Club. He and Rosemary also belonged to a close Circle of Friends and enjoyed trips on the “party bus.”
He is survived by seven nieces and nephews, as well as eight great-nieces and nephews: Susan Deane Turner (Springfield, MO), Andrew Leslie Turner and wife Judith (Santa Rosa, CA), Kathleen Turner and daughter Rachel Weiss (New York, NY), David Richard Turner, wife Amanda and daughter Molly Turner (Wellington, NZ), Jennifer Walker ( Kansas City, MO), Vincent Walker and children Andrew Walker and wife Laura, Austin Walker, Abigail Walker, and Adam Walker (Kansas City, MO), William Johnson and children Cooper Johnson and Finn Johnson (Denver, CO).
The family is also forever grateful for all of the loving care provided to both Rosemary and to Dr. Magee over the past ten years, from caregivers Shelly Randolf and Kim Swager, allowing them to live comfortably in their home until they passed. Shelly and Kim became like family to Dr. Magee, and he cared deeply for them.