Longtime Bath resident Dr. Wesley Hugh Van Fossen passed away peacefully after a long and valiant battle with cancer at his home at 7:45 a.m. Tuesday, June 30th surrounded by his immediate family.
He was born in Columbus, Ohio on October 14, 1936 to Dr. John M. Van Fossen, Sr. and Mabel M. Moore. He grew up in Upper Arlington, and was a gifted scholar and athlete. He earned the rank of Eagle Scout at age 14. He was active in community affairs and volunteer activities beginning as a Cub Scout, and in his undergraduate days at Ohio State and then throughout his life. He was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity.
He graduated from The Ohio State University Medical School in 1962. He interned at Northwestern University Medical Center and then completed his surgical residency at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. He first practiced medicine while serving as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War aboard the USS Maury (AGS-16). Upon fulfilling his commission in 1965, he trained in Urology at St. Louis University Medical Center. In 1968 he settled in Bath, practicing Urology in Fairlawn and at Akron General and Barberton Citizens Hospitals until his retirement in 2000. He was a respected and much-loved physician, cheerfully making patient house calls and looking closely after the many people in the community that he faithfully cared for over the years. He was an important teacher and mentor to many younger physicians and surgeons his entire career.
He was a loving husband, father, grandfather and brother, loyal friend, and steadfast American. He had a disciplined, analytic mind and enjoyed scientific inquiry and all aspects of the natural world. He most enjoyed time with his family and especially fishing and camping with his sons. He was an avid reader and lifelong ornithologist. He served as a docent and volunteer for the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, Summit County Metro Parks, and the Akron Zoo, earning awards for his persistent and dedicated volunteer service.
He is survived by his loving wife of 49 years, Linda (nee Alameda); his sons, Gregory Hugh of Akron, Grant Curtis (Kim) of Bath, Eric John (Ashley) of Charlotte, NC; grandchildren, Zane, Zoe, Archer, Gunnar, and Scout, many nephews and a niece, as well as many lifelong friends. His brother, Dr. John Maynard Van Fossen Jr. predeceased him in 2011.
His unusually kind and gentle, quietly strong and soft-spoken disposition was an example to all. He will be missed.
Calling hours were held Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Ciriello & Carr Funeral Home in Fairlawn. A memorial service will be held later. The family would like to thank Summa Hospice and Dr. Bradley Clifford for their compassionate care.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Akron Zoo.
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