Duane L. Waters, M.D.

MANISTIQUE – Dr. Duane L. Waters passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013. His spirit will live on in the hearts of his family and friends for many years to come. He will be dearly missed by his loving wife, Margaret, daughter, Mary Beth, and sons, David and Jim, their spouses and children.

Duane Leonard Waters was born on July 25, 1922, in Manistique. He was the son of Arthur Burton Waters and Irma Leonard Waters. His grandfather Waters came from Cornwall, England, in 1865, to work the mines of the Upper Peninsula. His grandfather Leonard farmed in St. Clair County, Mich., and worked for the Welsh Realty Co.

Duane graduated from Manistique High School in 1940 and then attended Alma College for five semesters until called to active duty in the U.S. Air Force in December of 1942. He was trained as a meteorologist at the 580th Technical Training Command center at the Pantlind Hotel in Grand Rapids, Mich.

He was then commissioned as a second lieutenant in September of 1943 and sent to the European Theater during World War II. Duane spent time in England as an instructor in a Field Orientation School, then as a detachment commander in France and then as an operations officer for the 21st Weather Squadron in Germany until 1945.

After the war, Duane entered the College of Engineering at the University of Michigan, and with only one semester until graduation, he transferred to the School of Arts and Literature to satisfy requirements for medical school. Duane entered Medical School at the University of Michigan in the fall of 1947 and graduated in 1951. He then completed a one year internship and a two year residency program in pediatrics at the University of Michigan.

Duane worked with Margaret Ruth Wahlfield as a lab partner in the spring of 1947; they were married in June of 1948. Daughter Mary Beth and son David were born while they were still in Ann Arbor. In June of 1954 they moved to Manistique and Duane entered private practice with Dr. James Fyvie. Sons James and Patrick were born in Manistique.

In April of 1964, Duane was appointed to the Michigan Corrections Commission by Governor George Romney. Working with the commission for 25 years and making monthly trips to Lansing, Duane helped to modernize the prison health care delivery system, implement a drug testing program in conjunction with the FDA, and build and staff a new hospital at Jackson Prison. This medical complex was named the Duane Leonard Waters Hospital in his honor.

Locally, Duane was a co-founder of the Manistique Medical and Dental Center as well as the Schoolcraft County Mental Health Program. He also served on the Board of Trustees for Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital for about five years. In October of 1974, Duane became a member of the Board of Directors for the State Savings Bank. In the summer of 1994, he was active in the community action regarding the EPA’s clean-up of the Manistique River and Harbor.

Duane retired from his medical practice in July of 1999, after 45 years of doctoring. After his retirement, he continued to consult at the Hiawatha Behavioral Health Center, assisted North Woods Home Health and Hospice, and became medical director of the Schoolcraft Medical Care Facility.

In his spare time over the years, Duane played cornet in the local Dixieland Band and the Manistique City Band. At age 60 he learned to fly, and was a medical examiner for the FAA.

Over the years, he was involved in many professional organizations too numerous to mention.

Duane was preceded in death by his older sisters, Aileen Brink and Lucille Billings-Dumond; and his youngest son, Patrick Waters.

Visitation will be held from 3 to 7 p.m., Friday, Jan. 11, at the Messier-Broullire Funeral Home in Manistique. A veteran’s memorial service will be held at 5 p.m. and parish prayers will be said at 7 p.m.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, at St. Francis de Sales Church in Manistique.

Burial will follow in the Lakeview Cemetery at Manistique, followed by a luncheon at the St. Francis parish center.

Memorial donations may be directed to the Manistique Area Schools Education Foundation or to the St. Francis de Sales School Education Foundation.