John was born in Glendive, Montana to Art and Nora Moore Moyer on February 25, 1922.
His mother died when he was six.
At the time he was to start the upper grades his father married Elvera Howell and the family moved to Fargo.
From the beginning, John looked on Elvera as his mother, and honored her as such until she died.
After high school, he began studies at North Dakota State University until drafted into the Army.
Early in his service, he received high marks on a qualifying exam for medical studies, and was sent to Washington and Lee College in Virginia.
These were pleasant memories for him as the students were on the honor system and he learned how to be a gentleman.
These qualities were paramount the remainder of his life.
John attended the University of North Dakota and received his medical degree from the University of Illinois School of Medicine in Chicago, and did his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Cook County Hospital.
He often joked that he was thirty two years old before he even earned a dime.
John moved to Spokane in 1955.
During his 30-year medical career he delivered over 7000 babies from Spokane and the outlying areas.
He also consulted in the outlying areas of Othello, Deer Park, Colville and Newport.
He introduced the Lamaze method of prepared childbirth in Spokane, introduced fathers to the delivery room and hired the first nurse midwife for his practice.
John represented Spokane in the State Legislature for ten years, serving the 6th and 3rd districts, working tirelessly for his constituents.
He was president of the Spokane County Medical Society and the Washington State Medical Society, Spokane Ob/Gyn Society and was on staff at Sacred Heart, Deaconess, Holy Family and St. Luke’s Hospitals.
John’s creed was, “if you live in a community for a major part of your life, or even a minor part, it is vital that you make some sort of contribution to community effort.”
A man of his word, he served on many boards: Advisory Board Washington State Basic Health Plan; St. Luke’s Rehab; Community Development, City of Spokane; North- west Museum of Arts and Culture (MAC); MAC Foundation Board; Spokane Chamber of Commerce; Children’s Home Society of Washington; United Way; Allegro Baroque and Beyond; founding member of the Leah Layne Foundation in Othello; founding member of the Spokane Family Birth Center; founding member, Friends of the Falls; steering committee for Historic Cannon Addition neighbor-hood, among many others.
He was especially honored to serve on the board of the now Providence Adult Day Health; he co-chaired their capital campaign to build the facility.
On his fund raising calls he would say, “We need this as you never know if you may need it”.
He was privileged to attend one or two days each week in his later years and to receive care from their wonderful staff.
John was preceded in death by his first wife Caroline Atkinson Moyer and his sister Geraldine Viel of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
He is survived by his wife of 27 years, Joanne.
He is also survived by his ten children: Nora Laughlin, Jay Moyer, Julie (Bill) Nesbitt, David (Cathi) Moyer, Mary (Mark) Janci, Tim (Cheryl) Moyer, Susan (Tom) Hurst, Jim (Penny) Moyer, Peggy (Stephan) Crooks, Chris (Andren) Moyer, and two step-children Lisa (Drew) Thatcher and Jeff (Deb) Halstead.
He is also survived by three brothers: George (Kathryn), Fresno, California, Gerald (Bev), Fargo, North Dakota, Bill (Julie), Minneapolis; and his nephew Bob Kirk (Tammi), Sioux Falls, South Dakota; thirty-three grandchildren and several great-grandchildren also survive him.
John was a consummate gentleman and will be remembered for his graciousness, his dry wit, and his love of jokes.
As one of his physican friends said, “John was able to see the face of Christ in everyone he touched”.
We will miss his smiling face and the grace with which he faced the devastating effects of Parkinson’s.
Thank you to Dr. Bill Sayres for his long years of concerned care and friendship, Dr. Stuart Cavilieri, Dr. Salil Manek, caregivers Suzi Becklund, Bonnie Blanton, Trevor Ribic, Gloria Glorfield and Lawanda Smith for their dedicated and loving care of John, the staff at Hospice House for their compassion during his final days, and all of our wonderful friends, too numerous to name, who were there to support John the past five years.
Memorial service for John will be held at Hamblen Presbyterian Church on Friday, September 5, at 3:30PM.
Reception will follow at the Spokane Club.
Memorial gifts may be made to Hamblen Presbyterian Church, Parkinson’s Resource Center, Providence Adult Day Health, Friends of the Falls, or Hospice of Spokane.
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