Local Obituaries

Retired Fort Worth surgeon spent 41 years serving patients

Dr. W.S. “Bill” Lorimer Jr., a longtime Fort Worth surgeon who retired in 1989, died Saturday at age 96.
Dr. W.S. “Bill” Lorimer Jr., a longtime Fort Worth surgeon who retired in 1989, died Saturday at age 96.

Dr. W.S. “Bill” Lorimer Jr. followed his father into the medical field in 1948, opening his own surgical practice in Fort Worth and devoting his own life to the profession.

“I knew as a child that he loved surgery,” said his daughter, Peggy Booher of Fort Worth. “It was his passion.”

Dr. Lorimer retired 41 years later, in 1989, but stayed involved. He went straight into the position of medical director of Community Hospice in Fort Worth, where recently he became a patient. On Saturday he died there at age 96.

Dr. Lorimer grew up in the Great Depression and met his wife, Margaret Deutsch of Wisconsin, on a blind date in college. They married in 1944.

The Lorimers didn’t heed their doctor’s recommendation that the stopped procreating after their third child, said their fourth child, Doug Lorimer. But the couple ended up with nine healthy kids — five girls and four boys.

“She was a good Catholic girl, and if you got pregnant, you had a baby,” Booher said. “I don’t know that it was all planned, but I do know she did want children and rolled with what would come her way.”

Dr. Lorimor graduated from Central High School (later renamed Pascal High School), where he played on the football team. After obtaining his bachelor’s degree at the University of Texas at Austin, he earned his medical degree from Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago.

In 1948, he opened his general surgery practice in his native Fort Worth. He earned numerous honors and leadership positions in a variety of medical associations.

Among those, he was a diplomate of the American Board of Surgery, a lifetime fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a founder and past president of the Fort Worth Surgical Society. In 1987 he was awarded the Gold-Headed Cane by fellow members of the Tarrant County Medical Society.

Observing his father’s professional life as a child and beyond, Doug Lorimer never doubted his own future: a third-generation surgeon.

“As a teenager I went to work in the surgery department at [the now closed] St. Joseph’s Hospital, where he was in active practice, Lorimer said. “I was just treated like royalty by the personnel.”

Other survivors include daughters Lorrie Ball of Charlotte, N.C.; Judy Escher of Fort Worth; and Katy Lomenick and Marynelle Walley of Dallas; sons Bill Lorimer of Fort Worth; Andrew Lorimer of Harlingen; and Sam Lorimer of Chicago; 25 grandchildren; and 13 great-grandchildren.

Robert Cadwallader: 817-390-7186, @Kaddmann_ST


Rosary is at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday and visitation is from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at Thompson’s Harveson & Cole Funeral Home. Funeral is at noon Wednesday at St. Andrew’s Catholic Church in Fort Worth. Burial will follow in Greenwood Cemetery.