Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Dr. Carl G. Ruehlmann, 86, family physician

WWII veteran made house calls

By Rebecca Goodman
Enquirer staff writer

HARTWELL - Carl G. Ruehlmann, a retired family practitioner and partner in the Wyoming Medical Center, died Sept. 29 at Wellspring Health Center in Hartwell after a series of illnesses. He was 86.

"Every patient he ever had loved him," said Eugene Ruehlmann of Covedale, former mayor of Cincinnati and Dr. Ruehlmann's brother.

"He was very compassionate, very understanding (and) took time to explain medical circumstances to his patients. Frequently, we'd be at family get-togethers and he'd get a call and up he'd go. He'd leave. That was when doctors still went to patients' houses. He delivered a substantial number of babies - that was a routine part of his practice."

His son, Tom of Wheaton, Ill., said, "Dad was one of the old-school family doctors that did a little bit of everything. I believe he was one of the last general practitioners in the area to deliver babies and to make house calls."

Dr. Ruehlmann grew up in the Covedale section of Price Hill and graduated from Western Hills High School. He received a medical degree from UC's College of Medicine in 1943 before he joined the Navy during World War II.

He was sent to Japan on the transfer ship USS Lanier, which was carrying troops dispatched to the Far East to invade Japan, according to his brother. Japan surrendered after the atomic bombings in August, 1945, and Dr. Ruehlmann was one of the first to arrive the following month. He was among the medics that set up a field hospital.

After the war, Dr. Ruehlmann completed an internship at General Hospital, then established a family practice before being recalled to active duty during the Korean War. He spent most of his time at Great Lakes Naval Base outside Chicago.

When he returned, he joined the doctors at the Wyoming Medical Center. He retired in 1987 after nearly 40 years of service.

"He was so well-loved by his patients," said Kathleen Downey, a physician who acquired many of Dr. Ruehlmann's patients. "His good care of them made it much easier for me to take care of the patients here."

Dr. Ruehlmann was a member of Hartwell Presbyterian Church and the VFW and was a board member of the Wildwood Nature Center, a Presbyterian retreat.

His wife of 56 years, Georgia I. Ruehlmann, died in 2003, and an infant son, Carl Jr., died in 1948.

In addition to his son and brother, survivors include a daughter, Susan I. Collaros of Springfield Township; another brother, Elmer Ruehlmann of Sequim, Wash.; a sister, Louise Mandell of Crestview Hills; five grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

A memorial service is 11 a.m. Saturday at the Hartwell Presbyterian Church, 210 Parkway Ave.

Memorials: Hartwell Presbyterian Church, 210 Parkway Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45216.


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