BLOOMDALE, Ohio - Dr. Francis J. Nemcik, a family physician, an avid scoutmaster, and a local musician, died of congestive heart failure Thursday in St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center, three days after his 80th birthday.
Dr. Nemcik was born in Cleveland on May 27, 1922. He attended Ohio State University and then OSU medical school, graduating in 1947.
Dr. Nemcik moved to Bloomdale right after graduation, his son, John Nemcik, said. The town's previous doctor had left and a friend with a family connection to the area suggested Dr. Nemcik for the job.
The town's leaders recruited him - offering a house and office rent-free for a year, Mr. Nemcik said.
While Dr. Nemcik didn't remain in that house, he did keep the office at 118 North Main. He added on to it, and it's still there, his son said.
Dr. Nemcik also worked in the hospitals in Fostoria and Findlay and belonged to several medical associations.
Dr. Nemcik left Bloomdale during the Korean War, when he was called to active duty in the Army. He was trained in rehabilitative medicine, such as physical and occupational therapy, and he went on to establish clinics to treat returning war veterans around the country, Mr. Nemcik said.
At the Mayo Clinic, Dr. Nemcik learned how to develop and read X-rays - a skill he took with him when he returned to Bloomdale. There, in his office's furnace room, he would develop patients' X-rays.
“For over 52 years, the people of Bloomdale trusted him with their lives. In return, he gave them his,” his son said of his father's work. “In this age of impermanence, he was a permanent fixture in Bloomdale. He was always there for people. He always answered the phone. He was a member of thousands of families here, at least temporarily.”
His patients were not all of his life - Dr. Nemcik also dedicated time to scouting.
He became interested in camping and hiking early on, his son said, taking weekend trips to parks. The weekend trips became canoeing trips to Canada over the years.
As his sons became Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, he became Troop 337's leader, keeping his interests alive.
He took his troop to Minnesota and the Great Smoky Mountains in a school bus he had converted.
“He felt it was very important to offer the leadership to help young kids,” Mr. Nemcik said.
As his children grew out of Boy Scouts, he went on to train other troop leaders. He was awarded the Wood Badge and Silver Beaver Award - the highest honors awarded a civilian scout, his son said.
Dr. Nemcik also was a musician, playing the B-flat and E-flat coronets. He played for seven years in the Ohio State Marching Band.
“He realized fairly soon that you couldn't make much of a living as a musician. He understood that there was something better he could do, perhaps for more people,” Mr. Nemcik said.
Dr. Nemcik continued to play in bands after college, including the University of Findlay's summer concert series band.
He also was in the Gang Band until last year, a small group that rode their float in small-town parades, playing marching music, his son said.
Dr. Nemcik married Luella Miller on March 18, 1944. She died Dec. 29, 1999.
Surviving are his sons, John, Ted, and Joe; sister, Arline Mallory, and three grandchildren.
There will be no visitation. Memorial services will be at 5:30 p.m. Friday in Trinity United Methodist Church, Bloomdale. Arrangements are by the Coldren-Crates Funeral Home.
The family request tributes to the Trinity United Methodist Church window fund.