Born: December 17, 1922 - Deceased: July 19, 2020
Dr. Wayne B. Cox II, 97, of Belleville, IL, passed away Sunday, July 19, 2020 at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, MO. Born December 17, 1922, in Crawfordsville, IN, to parents Wayne Bresee and Jessie, nee Hymer, Cox, Wayne grew up in Edwardsville, IL, and maintained a lifelong love for his hometown, following the high school Tigers basketball fervently for over 80 years. He was also deeply influenced by his time in the Boy Scouts there, in which he attained the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout.
Wayne later attended Wabash College and was a member of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity there before his studies were cut short by World War II. Wayne enlisted and served as Second Lieutenant in the Army Air Force, becoming a bombardier-navigator on one of the famed B-24 Liberator bombers and completing 16 missions. He was a lifelong patriot with a fervent love of our country.
While serving, his flight crew was grounded by fog in Topeka, Kansas where he met June, the love of his life. He said he knew right away he loved her. They married on December 29, 1945, and they had 3 children and wonderful life adventures together. They had looked forward to their 75th anniversary this year.
After the war, Wayne completed his studies at the University of Illinois, St. Louis University Medical School and he interned at St. Mary’s Hospital in East St. Louis, IL. He also served as Chief of Staff at Christian Welfare Hospital. As a General Physician and Surgeon, Wayne practiced with Drs. O.M. and H.E. McCann, and was a member of the American Medical Association and a Lifetime Member of the American Academy of Family Physicians. He was the last surviving original staff member at Memorial Hospital in Belleville (recently made part of the BJC network) which opened in 1958. Wayne made house calls, performed major surgeries, and delivered over 2500 babies. He kept up with medicine and medications, regularly completing his continuing education requirements, and was still a licensed physician at the time of his death. He was beloved by his patients and staff. His work ethic and integrity in life served as a role model for us all.
Wayne was an elder of the First United Presbyterian Church in Belleville, IL. He had a strong quiet faith in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, that never faltered. He spent his life serving and caring for others, including going on 17 church mission trips, with his wife June, all over the USA.
Wayne had an amazing mind for facts of all kinds, history, and storytelling right up to the end of his life. He was a man of so many interests and passions, shared with June, which kept him active, involved, and young at heart. These passions included his family, his church, basketball (he could remember any statistic), baseball Cardinals, cars of all kinds and mechanical expertise which enabled him to repair anything (Motor Trend and Popular Mechanics magazines could be found alongside medical journals), traveling in their RV, boating on their pontoon boat, watching old movies, and many beloved pets. His life was full, with wonderful friends and family who were blessed to have him in their lives and who will dearly miss him.
Surviving are his:
Memorials: Memorial gifts may be made to the First United Presbyterian Church in Belleville, IL. 1303 Royal Heights Rd., Belleville, IL 62223
Visitation: Visitation from 3:00 – 6:00 pm, Sunday, August 2, 2020 at Kurrus Funeral Home, 1773 Frank Scott Parkway W., Belleville, IL. 62223
Memorial Service: Due to Covid 19 limitations, a private Memorial Service will be held on August 3rd, at 10:30am with Pastor Rob Dyer officiating. However, a live stream can be viewed at time of service at www.facebook.com/kurrusfh Interment will follow at Valley View Cemetery, Edwardsville, IL.
Wow what an amazing man!!! He blazed a beautiful trail ?. It would have been a gift to know him. Please accept our deepest empathy, hugs and prayers.
I was one of those 2,500-plus babies that Dr. Cox delivered, along with my two sisters. He was always kind and patient with us when we came in for shots, physicals and whatever minor ailments afflicted us growing up in the 1960s and 70s. One time, my father had to take my sister and I for an appointment and my mother was aghast that we had gone with dirty feet and legs from playing outside. It never seemed to upset Dr. Cox.
Rest easy, Dr. Cox, and thank you.
I had the pleasure of knowing Dr Cox as he served on the Board of Directors of Lincoln Trail Bank in Fairview Heights. He was a true gentlemen and so knowledgable in so many areas. He touched so many lives and I, for one, learned much from him. He will be missed!
On behalf of the board of directors and staff of the Illinois Academy of Family Physicians, please accept our condolences on the passing of Wayne B. Cox, II, MD. I remember meeting Dr. Cox early in my career, late in his career. He was an attendee of a long-standing continuing education program that IAFP held at St. Elizabeth’s. I enjoyed hearing his stories of his early career as a family physician. He was part of the generation that founded family medicine in 1969. He and his fellow GP’s were the solid foundation on which family medicine was established. Our prayers and sympathies are with his family and friends.
Our entire family love our fantastic Wayne and his dear wife who were always invited to all of our celebration parties. Wayne was a “go to” person who could talk with great knowledge on any subject and loved to share amazing stories. His generous spirit was outstanding in being there for us with our questions and informational needs. Greater than all this was his tremendous love for his God who was the center of his life in all he did. There is no doubt in my mind that God was a vital part of his daily medical practice as he became a “healer” to all he met…be it the mind, body, or soul. Wayne was unique in every way, who now is with God forever enjoying Eternal Peace and Love and yet forever in spirit with June and his family and friends daily. We all dearly love our Wayne!!!
What a remarkable person. He was our family physician for decades. I was one of his 2500 deliveries as well as 2 of my children. He was the Superman of doctors- deliver babies, set broken bones, stitch up cuts, and take out bad organs! He did all of this in my extended family. He will truly be missed in our world.
Dr. Cox was truly our family doctor. My parents, brothers, sisters, Aunts, Uncles and grandmother were all were cared for by this fine man. He delivered two of my 3 children, waited too long to have my 3rd. He informed me he was out of the baby business! Most tender memory of him was the compassion he had for his patients. My father was at end stage of pancreatic cancer and was in agonizing pain. He refused any care that would extend his life, suffering and too stubborn to accept pain relief measures. Near the end dad was a patient at Memorial. In the middle of the night Dr. Cox appeared in his room and was able to talk dad into trusting him that the procedure they wanted to perform would serve only as pain relief and not prolong his life. He waited with dad as they performed the treatment and then left quietly. Here’s the heart wrenching part…I asked what made him be at the hospital so late and come visit my dad. The nurse confided that Dr. Cox’s own father was across the hall also at the end stages of his life. He had heard my father’s moans and came over to check on dad. His father passed two days before my own. Who does that? Only a dedicated, compassionate, faithful servant of God. So go rest high on the mountain Doctor Cox you have earned the bounty God has prepared for you.
May God bless your family as they mourn your passing and rejoice in knowing that this is only a separation, not goodbye.
The Schwartz, Ranken, Lunsford, Anderson, Eagan, Nichols families.
Dear June and Family, Please accept the condolences of the entire McClinton family who knew you all through First Presbyterian Church in East St. Louis and through Dr. Cox’s medical practice. He was a kind, caring and patient man. He gave of himself to many people.
God Bless your whole family in this time of loss.
My husband Fred and I live in Port Charlotte Florida now and just this week, while doing my daily walk, I began thinking about Dr. Cox wondering if he was alive, was he well, how old would he be. All these questions kept rolling over in my mind as well as the memories I have of him. Dr. Cox delivered our two girls, one at Christian Welfare Hospital and one at Memorial Hospital. At both births we wondered whether he would make it to the hospital because he was either at a basketball game (everyone knew he loved that sport) or at church. I loved this man for the kind of person he was. He was kind, patient and caring beyond any other man. My mother-in-law suffered from cancer and toward the end of her journey she still insisted on making an appointment to see her beloved Dr. Cox; he honored her by coming to her wake. We were so impressed by Dr. Cox and how he showed his love to our family. To June, Susan, Mark, and Roger you had the best husband and father and I know you cherished him as he did each of you. My prayers are for you as we say, “rest in peace” Dr. Cox.
Dr, Cox was truly a great doctor and we were so blessed to have him as our family’s physician. But he was much more than that and truly a trail blazer and a kind, empathetic man. He touched so many lives and will always be remembered. My sincerest sympathy to his loving family and many friends. Rest in Peace Dr. Cox – the world was a better place because of you.
Dear Mrs. Cox, Susan, Mark and Roger,
Holding you close with generous thoughts and prayers. Dr. Cox was an exceptional human being, so patient, well respected, kind, plus greatly admired for his passion and compassion. I hold such warm and treasured childhood memories of our families at First Presbyterian Church in East St. Louis. May you each find comfort knowing you were loved by this fine man.
Chet F. Breitwieser
Belleville, Illinois and Arrow Rock, Missouri
I had the pleasure of working for Dr. Cox for 20 plus years , he was respected and loved by his patients and staff, he treated them like family. He was never too busy for a patient and so easy to talk to. He came into the office in the morning whistling and left the office in the evening whistling. Dr. Cox and June never missed a birthday call even though I have been retired 25 years. I will always remember him for his compassion, kindness and thoughtfulness. He was just Dr. “C”.
There is not any words left to say that were not previous spoken, what a wonderful man and Doctor, and friend to so many, My true sympathy goes out to June, the love of his life, and his family which he was so proud of, he will be truly missed, We all had one of the best Doctor and friend their ever was , caring for so many, I was lucky to have known him through out many
years, He was one of the best and we will never have another as great as Wayne. We will all miss you and remember you forever. Farewell my friend, Love to your family, you were always special to my family.
When I was 12 yrs. old, I was hit on my bike by a car. saturday afternoon,about two , I was taken to st. marys or christian welfare,not sure which. Dr. Cox,our family doctor,met the ambulance,operated on me,mainly my hand and head. never forget how nice he was to a kid. he was with Dr. McCann at the time and they both were very nice . I am 77 yrs. old now, have never forgotten him. Having read the other stories, he made quite an impression on everyone that knew him. I wish I could have known him better later in life.
Our family will miss ‘our’ doctor,Wayne was also a great Uncle Wayne to me and my sisters and many cousins.Whenever he and Aunt June came to Kansas we all enjoyed their stay.We all had fun going on swimming trips and of course to the local Dairy Queen. We will all had lots of skinned knees doctored,and kitten scratches! He was a blessing to our families and such a good uncle to put up with all of us kids. Heaven has gained a wonderful man!
What a legacy he lived. It was an honor to get to know him. I am so happy Tatum was able to meet him. He spoke so highly of her and was always so loving to my family and me. We are very grateful to of shared stories with him. Many prayers to you and your family. I pray your hearts are filled with continued joy and celebrated reflections of Wayne.
Condolences to Dr Cox family especially Mark who I worked with many years ago.
May he rest in peace.
Dr. Cox was a man of faith and good works. Regularly seen at church with his family, he certainly was a pillar of the Presbyterian church. We missed seeing him as the “broom man” but now undoubtedly resides with the great cloud of witnesses. May his beloveds feel the love he so freely gave. Praying for their comfort and peace in this time of sorrow.
Mrs. Cox, Susan, Mark and Roger, thank you so much for sharing your husband and Dad. From 1958 until his retirement Dr. Cox took care of Clyde, Loy, Tierney, Ron and Eric, and always talked basketball with Eric while a waiting room full of patients waited. Dr. Cox was the BEST of the Best. With Deepest Sympathy, the Wehmeiers
In the early 60’s, my dad was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease and Dr. Cox was recommended to oversee his treatments. During the many years of seeing Dr. Cox, our family learned to love and respect him. He became like a close friend to my dad. Praying for peace and comfort to his entire family.
Dr. Cox was a brilliant medical doctor and a wonderful friend. It was my privilege to be a neighbor for fourteen years. He and June would sit out on their front lawn in the evenings, enjoying the peace and quiet after Dr. Cox had worked a long hard day at the office. Roger and my kids would play together in front of their house. He was truly a special person.
Dr. Cox was my Doctor when I was a little girl living in East St. Louis. I am now 70. I remember he made house calls and a few of them were to our house. By reading all the comments I could see he lived his life as a very compassionate person and all who knew him loved him. So sorry to his family for their loss.
Dr Cox treated three generations of our family- grandparents , parents and us kids. He seemed ahead of his time in knowing the best ways for being healthy- for example I remember him calling cigarettes “cancer sticks “ way before that was commonly known! He and his wife’s kind friendliness and generous spirits are unforgettable. He was a true friend and amazing doctor and human being.