Obituary for SCOOP founder, Dr. Park Lambuth Gerdine

          February 13, 1923 – June 25, 2016

          Park Lambuth Gerdine died peacefully of pneumonia with his three children by his side in Asheville, NC on June 25, 2016. He was 93 years old.

          Since 1999, Park had resided at Deerfield Episcopal Retirement Community in Asheville. A retired physician, he married Evelyn White in 1947, and they had three children. After Evelyn’s death in 2000, he married Susan Haupt, who survives him.

          Park was born on February 13, 1923 in the city of Songdo (now Kaesong) in what would become North Korea. He was the youngest child of Joseph Lumpkin Gerdine and Eleanor Dye Gerdine, who worked as Methodist missionaries in Korea for 35 years. He received most of his primary education at the Seoul Foreign School until the family moved back to the States when he was a sophomore in high school.

          Park served in the U.S. Army Air Corps in World War II and was stationed in the Pacific. After the Japanese surrender, he served as aide to Gen. John R. Hodge, U.S. military governor of Korea. His memoir of this assignment was published by the Royal Asiatic Society-Korea Branch in its journal Transactions.

          He graduated from the Emory School of Medicine in Atlanta. He had a private medical practice in Quitman, Ga., and Killeen, Texas. In 1970 he entered the emerging specialty of emergency medicine. The family moved to Rockport, Texas, on the Gulf Coast, and he practiced emergency medicine in South Texas until he retired in the early 1980s. Retirement took him to Green Cove Springs, Fla., and then to Asheville, N.C.

          Park was an avid sailor, first on the lakes of Central Texas and later on the Gulf of Mexico. He made several cruises to the Bahamas at the helm of his own boat. In 1976, he and son Warren sailed from the Texas coast to New York Harbor in their 27-foot sloop Karma, for the arrival of the tall ships in conjunction with the U.S. bicentennial celebration.

          Park is survived by his wife, Susan H. Gerdine, of Asheville, N.C.; his children, Elaine Gerdine of Salem, Mass.; Virginia Gerdine Barnett of Austin, Texas; and Warren Gerdine of Wallingford, Pa.; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Evelyn W. Gerdine, and his two sisters, Eleanor Rebecca Webb and Mary Ethyl Bitting.

          A memorial service is scheduled for Wednesday, July 6, at the chapel in St. Giles Healthcare Chapel at Deerfield Episcopal Retirement Community in Asheville. Memorial gifts may be directed to the Shepherd’s Center of Orange Park (www.tscoop.org), which Park and Evelyn were instrumental in founding.

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