SOUTH PADRE ISLAND, TX. – Dr. Gerald R. Whitson of South Padre Island, Texas passed away on Friday, June 11, 2021 at the age of 72.
He was born in Charleston, IL to his loving parents, Perry and Carolyn (Rasmussen) Whitson on May 4, 1949. He graduated with honors from Northwestern University Dental School in 1975. Dr. Whitson then proudly served his country as a Naval Dentist at the Naval Station Great Lakes in Lake County, IL. He completed his Oral Maxillofacial residency at the University of Kentucky Albert B Chandler Medical Center from 1977 to 1980. He was an accomplished surgeon specializing in cleft palate reconstruction and facial trauma. He practiced in Colorado Springs before being recruited to Harlingen, Texas in 1999 to help create the new Trauma Center at Valley Baptist Medical Center. He started his private Oral Maxillofacial practice in Harlingen in 2004 but remained on the medical staff at Valley Baptist Medical Center until 2012. He was named Physician of the Year in 2004 and was Chief of Surgery in 2006 and 2007. So many lives were healed by Dr. Whitson’s extraordinary surgical talents.
Dr. Whitson had a wonderful sense of humor and a warm, generous spirit. He loved being a mentor to young professionals just entering the medical field and enjoyed collaborating with colleagues on complex trauma cases. In his spare time, he enjoyed wind surfing and fishing in the Laguna Madre. He was often heard to say to friends and family “There is something spiritual about this bay”. When he retired in 2016, he spent many relaxing and peaceful hours in and around the bay.
He is survived by his loving partner, Theresa; his three children Jason, James, and Savannah; his 4 grandchildren Zeyta, Vann, Lilith, and Gunnar; his two sisters, Pam and Beth; eight nieces and nephews Stephanie, Scott, Carrie, Austin, Lauren, Aleia, Raine, and Alana; nine grandnieces and grandnephews, and by one great-grandnephew.
The family will gather at a later date for a private Celebration of Life service.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donating to one of Dr. Whitson’s favorite charities: Friends of Animal Rescue, 4908 Padre Boulevard, South Padre Island, Texas 78597, (956) 772-1171, www.spifriendsofanimalrescue.com or Marine Military Academy, 320 Iwo Jima Boulevard, Harlingen, Texas 78550, (956) 423-6006, www.mma-tx.org.
Memories of Dr. Whitson may be shared at www.darlingmouser.com.
Personalized funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Darling-Mouser Funeral Home at 945 Palm Boulevard in Brownsville, Texas 78520, (956) 546-7111.
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