Saturday, Sep 22, 2018
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Ex-surgeon once led Village Council


Dr. Theron L. Hopple, a retired neurosurgeon who was a former president of Ottawa Hills Village Council, died Tuesday in Kingston Care Center. He was 92.

The cause of death was not known, but Dr. Hopple had been in failing health recently, his wife, Lorraine, said.

Dr. Hopple, a Sylvania Township resident, retired from neurosurgery in 1979 after 32 years. He shared a practice in the former Secor Hotel with Dr. Max Schnitker and Dr. George Booth.

"They were the only neurosurgeons in town," Mrs. Hopple said. "He enjoyed being able to help people, people who had back problems and brain injuries. He was a good doctor. The patients liked him and had confidence in him."

He and Bernhardt Zeiher, retired chief executive officer of Parkview Hospital, only became friends and Sylvania Country Club golf partners in retirement. Still, they spoke of the "glory days of medicine," Mr. Zeiher recalled. "Doctors practiced medicine the way they thought they should, not the way the insurance companies and Medicare told them to.

"He really enjoyed being a physician, but he was in a highly specialized field in those days. Steady hands, steady eyes: You didn't have all these modern contraptions," Mr. Zeiher said. "He was a gentleman's gentleman. He was a person you were happy to be acquainted with."

Dr. Hopple was a former president of the Academy of Medicine of Toledo and Lucas County. He was chief of staff at St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center and Mercy and St. Luke's hospitals.

Dr. Hopple was elected president of Ottawa Hills council in January, 1971, seven years after he took office.

Born in Valparaiso, Ind., he was a 1934 graduate of DeVilbiss High School.

He played piano, trumpet, and violin, and while at DeVilbiss led a 10-piece dance band, the Bud Hopple Orchestra, which played at school dances and social functions around Toledo.

He was a 1938 graduate of the University of Toledo. He received a medical degree in 1942 from the University of Chicago. In the Navy, he was attached to a Marine unit during World War II service in the South Pacific.

Long interested in sports, he was a former president of the Downtown Coaches Association, of which his father, Harry, was a founding member.

Surviving are his wife, Lorraine, whom he married Jan. 16, 1943; daughters, Diane Bregenzer, Carol Krause, and Leslie Williams; son, Craig Hopple; 10 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

There will be no visitation. Memorial services are pending. Arrangements are by the Walker Funeral Home.

The family suggests tributes to UT or Epworth United Methodist Church, where he was a member, or a charity of the donor's choice.

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