Dr. Robert "Bob" Eaton

Robert Claire (Bob) Eaton, longtime family doctor in Clarion, died on January 5, 2014, under Hospice care at the Iowa Specialty Hospital in Clarion, ten days before his 95th birthday.

Memorial services for Dr. Robert Eaton will be held on Thursday, January 9, 2014 at 10:30 AM at the United Presbyterian Church, 219 1st Street North West in Clarion with Pastor Bill Kem officiating.  A private family burial will be held at a later date.

Visitation will be held Wednesday, January 8, 2014 from  4:00 – 7:00 PM at Ewing Funeral Home, 1801 Central Avenue East in Clarion, and will continue one hour prior to the services at the church on Thursday.

Dr. Eaton, the son of Fred C. and Olga (Cerny) Eaton, was born January 15, 1919, in Tangshan China, where his father was on the faculty of the Tangshan University of Engineering.   Bob grew up in Iowa City, graduating from City High School there in 1936 and from the University of Iowa College of Medicine in 1943.

On October 4, 1944, he married Edith Bowe of Davenport in Iowa City. He served in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army from 1943 to 1946 and was overseas in the western Pacific.

In April 1947 Bob came to Clarion with a fellow medical school classmate, Richard Young, and they established an office for the practice of family medicine.  They were joined in 1951 by Charles Hawkins and in 1958 by Robert McCool.  Then followed 23 years of a very close and enjoyable partnership among the four of them, until the untimely death of Dr. Hawkins in 1981.  Bob retired in 1983.

Among the great joys of his life were the close relationships he developed with his patients and their families.  In retirement, it was rare for him to go to a community event, pancake breakfast, or chili supper without being greeted by someone whom he had delivered.

Bob was a life member of the Iowa State Medical Society, the University of Iowa Alumni Association, the American Legion, and a 28-year member of the Board of Directors of the First National Bank in Clarion.  He served Wright County and Clarion in a professional capacity as coroner and city health officer and served on numerous community boards and committees.  As an ordained Elder and Deacon, he was an active member of the United Presbyterian Church.

Bob and his wife served on the planning committee for The Meadows, a senior independent living facility in Clarion. They were among the first residents to move in when it opened in 1993 and continue to live there.

He is survived by Edie, his wife of 69 years, and their three children: son Bill and his wife Daryl of Tulsa, OK; daughter Susie Pappas of Iowa City, IA; son David and his wife Kristy of Leawood, KS; and seven grandchildren: Mike Eaton (Erin Williams) of Lakewood, CO; Diana (David) Schoell of Tulsa; Sara (Galen) Bellamy and Philip Pappas, both of Denver, CO; Chelsea Eaton of Overland Park, KS; and Callie and Alex Eaton of Leawood, KS.  He also had three great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his father, his mother, and one sister.

Bob always felt truly blessed to have had such a full, satisfying, and happy life.

Memorial contributions may be made to the United Presbyterian Church in Clarion, Hospice for Wright County, or a charity of one’s choice.

Link to interview with Dr. Eaton on University of Iowa College of Medicine website:


Date: Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Time: 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Where: Ewing Funeral Home – Clarion
1801 Central Avenue East, Clarion, Iowa 50525
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Date: Thursday, January 9, 2014
Time: 10:30 am
Where: United Presbyterian Church – Clarion
219 1st Street Northwest, Clarion, Iowa 50525
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