Friday, May 25, 2018
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Dr. Joseph P. Moran, Jr.; 1916-2013 : ‘Toledo Torpedo’ became respected chief of surgery




Dr. Joseph P. Moran, Jr., a former chief of surgery at Toledo Hospital who was active in surgery until age 75 and in medicine until age 85, died July 30 in Legends Alzheimer’s Center, Jackson, Mich. He was 97.

He moved to assisted living in the Brooklyn, Mich., area five years ago from his longtime South Toledo home, his son, Richard said.

“He was well-known and well-respected,” said Dr. William Bruggemann, who was an obstetrician-gynecologist. “He was a mentor to a lot of people, me included. He never encountered a situation he couldn’t deal with. He had immense imagination and experience.”

Dr. Moran served on the executive boards of several hospitals. He was a former president of the Toledo Surgical Society and a former vice president of the Academy of Medicine of Toledo and Lucas County. He was an associate clinical professor of surgery at the former Medical College of Ohio.

“He was humbled to be asked to serve in any of these positions,” his son said.

For decades, he hand-painted a holiday scene on the family picture window, each based on a card from the year before. A drive past the Moran home was a tradition in some families.

“The picture was always different, and people were waiting to see what it would be this year,” his son said.

He was born May 9, 1916, to Hazel and Joseph P. Moran. He was a graduate of Waite High School, where he and his brother, Ed, were standouts on the swim team.

At Ohio Wesleyan University, Dr. Moran was called the “Toledo Torpedo,” and the brothers became co-captains. Dr. Moran set several school records and in 1970 was named to its hall of fame.

He received his medical degree from what was then Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He was an Army veteran of World War II, where he initially trained to use his swimming skills for an invasion of Japan that never occurred, before working in a Tokyo hospital. He then served his medical residency at what is now Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, where he became chief of residents and of surgical services.

He was a longtime member of Trinity Episcopal Church in Toledo and rarely missed a Sunday service, his son said.

Dr. Moran and his wife, Mildred, married May 15, 1943. She died in January, 2003. A son, Joe, died Dec. 7, 2011. Joe Moran and his wife, Patty, were active in the Villagers musical troupe, and he owned nightclubs in Toledo and Maumee.

Surviving Dr. Moran are his son, Richard Moran; daughter, Mary Lou Sage; five grandchildren, and 10 great-grandchildren.

Memorial services will begin at 1 p.m. Aug. 24 in Lutheran Church of the Lakes, Addison, Mich. Arrangements are by the Eggleston, Meinert & Pavley Funeral Home in Oregon. The family suggests tributes to the Joseph and Hazel Moran scholarship fund at Ohio Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio, or Lutheran Church of the Lakes.

Contact Mark Zaborney at: or 419-724-6182.

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