Obituary: Drury, Omer Harvey
DRURY, Omer Harvey
Loving husband, caring dad, wonderful grandpa and devoted great-grandpa Omer Harvey Drury passed away peacefully on Friday, May 11, 2012 at his home in Troy, Idaho.
Dr. “Doc” Drury was born in a farmhouse near Emmett, Idaho on October 21, 1922. His mother was assisted by a neighbor lady and his father went to the end of the lane to make sure the doctor found the right lane to their farmhouse. However, prior to the doctor’s arrival the neighbor lady decided to leave the room where his mother was in labor. Omer and his mother were the only ones in the room when he decided to make his appearance. Shortly after he was born he was weighed on a grocery scale at a local market and weighed in at 10 pounds.
Dr. Drury grew up during the Depression and his father was a share farmer and also had a few milking cows. He often said, “Those cows put me through medicine because I thought about milking cows with the rain pouring down my neck, it would make me study harder.”
Dr. Drury went to seven different elementary schools until he completed the eighth grade in 1936. He attended Gem State Academy from 1937-1941. He was the Junior and Senior class president and was also the valedictorian of his Senior class. When he first attended Gem State Academy he applied for work at the school’s bakery. However, he was considered too small to work there. So he worked at the school farm milking cows. Eventually he was hired at the school bakery and had to hitchhike home to have his mother help him locate some white clothing for the bakery job.
When Dr. Drury was in high school he learned the trade of cutting hair from his uncle who was a barber. Eventually he started charging for each hair cut. He continued this trade throughout his college years. From 1941-1944, he attended and graduated from Walla Walla University. He started his college education planning to be a minister. However, J.R. Sloop discussed with Omer if he had ever considered becoming a medical doctor. Mr. Sloop promised him that he would find funding to help him with his medical school tuition if he got the good grades. He did.
On December 21, 1944, Dr. Drury married his high school sweetheart, Elaine Estes.
From 1944 - 1948 Dr. Drury attended and graduated from Loma Linda University School of Medicine. On July 1, 1948 he completed his internship at Porter Adventist Hospital in Denver, Colorado.
From Denver he moved to Beach, North Dakota and practice medicine for 18 months. On November 11, 1949, he moved to Troy, Idaho. They stayed with Leroy and Doris Carlson when first arriving in Troy. On February 11, 1950 Dennis Carlson was born the first of the many “Drury Babies”. In 1956 he was drafted into the Public Health Service and was sent to El Reno, Oklahoma working at the federal penitentiary as the head medical officer. He returned to Troy in 1958 where he served the people of Troy and surrounding towns for 41 years until his retirement. He had devoted nurses and secretaries through the years. However, his best assistant in setting fractured arms or legs was Clyde Bohman providing the counter traction.
Dr. Drury enjoyed the out of doors, including snow skiing. Orvil and Leroy Carlson along with Doc had several little ski hills, which included three on Orchard Loop Road and one behind the old brick plant.
Dr. Drury owned and operated the Drury Family rafting business over a period of 30 years working with his children, grandchildren and other young people. He was a licensed outfitter and guide on the Snake River, Salmon River and Middlefork of the Salmon River. Though he rafted many rivers with many people, he said the trip he remembered most fondly was on the Colorado River through Grand Canyon with all his grandchildren in 1992. Not only did he enjoy rafting and snow skiing he also enjoyed jet boating, back packing, water skiing, volleyball and many more sports.
Dr. Drury was always an active and vibrant person, even into his later years he could not resist the pull of hard work and hard play. He was still guiding rafts into his 70s. He climbed Mount Whitney, the highest summit in the contiguous United States, when he was almost 74 years of age. He bicycled the Hiawatha Trail when he was 85 years of age.
Dr. Drury was an active member of the Troy Seventh-day Adventist church.
The family would like to thank Doctors William Bozarth and Brad Drury for the compassionate medical care they provided.
In life Dr. Drury was a force of nature, which left kindness and generosity in his wake. In his death he will live on in the hearts of those he affected.
Dr. Drury was preceded in death by his parents, Edward Virgil Drury and Florence Adele Lee; brother Edward Drury; and sister Beth Lovelace. He is survived by his wife of over 67 years, Elaine Drury; and his five children - Larry and Lu (Wright) Drury of Spokane, Washington, Joy and Clyde Gauger of Riddle, Oregon, June and Mike Miner of Troy, Idaho, Charlie and Lynn Drury of Vancouver, Washington, Becky Bradshaw of Meridian, Idaho, and Nadine and Ells Nelson, a foster daughter that never left. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Also surviving are two brothers Lee Drury of Clarkston, Washington, and Veryl Drury of Susanville, California; and one sister Ruth Hickenlooper of Hammett, Idaho.
The family suggest in lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Troy Fire and Ambulance Department and Deary Adventist Community Center.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, May 18, 2012 at 12:30pm. The service will be held at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at 1657 S. Blaine in Moscow, Idaho. A reception will follow the memorial service.
A private family burial will be at a later time at Beulah Cemetery.
Arrangements have been entrusted to SHORT’S FUNERAL CHAPEL, MOSCOW, and online condolences may be sent to www.shortsfuneralchapel.net.