Dr. Frank M. Wiygul Jr.
Dr. Frank M. Wiygul Jr. went on the next stage of his journey on July 25, 2023, a few months after his 100th birthday.
Frank was born on May 12, 1923 in Shannon, Mississippi to Frank M. Wiygul and Mabel Gordon Wiygul. After graduating from Shannon High School he started college at Sunflower Junior College but left to serve in World War II as an infantryman in France and Luxembourg. As part of C company of the 10th Army Division's 54th Armored Infantry Battalion he helped liberate Europe after the Normandy invasion.
After the war Frank finished his degree at the University of Mississippi. He enrolled in what was then the two-year medical school at Ole Miss and under the tutelage of Dr. Arthur Guyton, a legendary physiologist, he went on to receive his M.D. from Harvard Medical School in 1951. He did his post-graduate training in pediatrics in New Orleans, Louisiana,, where he was on the faculty at the Tulane Medical School, and San Antonio, Texas.
In 1956 he married Nell Thomas of Booneville, Mississippi. They settled in Jackson, Mississippi and had three boys - Mitch, Robert (Julia) and Tom (Catherine).
His greatest professional interest was health care delivery to people who needed it. There were plenty of those in Mississippi, and after a stint in private practice he worked for many years with Dr. Alton Cobb and others to help develop the structures and organization that eventually became the modern Mississippi State Department of Health. He divided the rest of his medical career between the health department and the University of Mississippi's Medical School, where he taught in the family practice section until his retirement in 1989. He received several teaching awards, and also ran what Nell called his front porch clinic for neighborhood children and the occasional dog or cat. Frank was a dedicated caregiver in Nell's battle with dementia, and after she passed away in 2013 he returned to his mainstays of gardening, fishing and reading. For the two years before his death he was in nursing care at St. Catherine's Village.
Frank was predeceased by his wife Nell and his siblings Clayton Wiygul, John G. Wiygul, and Mabel Jane McCluer.
He is survived by his brother Glenn (Sherry), sons Mitch, Robert (Julia) and Tom (Catherine), grandchildren Thomas (Blair), Emma, Rachel, Caroline and Amelia, and a flock of nieces, nephews, friends and admirers.
A memorial service was held August 29 at Galloway United Methodist Church.