Walter Larson Obituary

Walter W. Larson
Walter W. Larson
Walter W. Larson

September 12, 1928 - April 14, 2007
Born in Des Moines, IA
Resided in Ames, IA
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Dr. Walter William Larson, 78, passed away April 14, surrounded by his family at the Madrid Home. A private burial will be in Hillsdale Cemetery, east of Madrid. A celebration of his life will be held at a later date.

Walter Larson was born on September 12, 1928, in Des Moines to Ankeny W. and Grayce (Tomlinson) Larson. He grew up in Madrid and graduated from Madrid High School in 1946, where he earned the honor of Salutatorian. After high school he attended Augustana College in Rock Island, IL, from 1946 to 1949, where he participated in basketball and football. He also played semi-pro basketball in Rock Island, IL. Upon graduation he attended the University of Iowa College of Medicine from 1949 to 1953 and was elected to membership in Alpha Omega Alpha Honorary Medical Society. He served his internship at St. Louis City Hospital from 1953 to 1954.

In 1954 he graduated from the School of Aviation Medicine at Randolf AFB, Texas. He was a flight surgeon at Wright Patterson AFB from 1954-1956. In 1956 he began his pediatric residency at Raymond Blank Memorial Hospital in Des Moines and continued until 1958. While at Blank Children's Hospital, Dr. Larson participated in the nation's first live television broadcast of an intra cardiac surgery.

As the twelfth member of McFarland Clinic in Ames, Dr. Larson began his pediatric practice in 1958 and retired in 1990. He assisted in the development of the first volume-controlled pediatric ventilator in conjunction with Bournes Electronic Corporation and the University of Iowa Department Of Anesthesia throughout the 1960's. In 1992 he continued to practice pediatrics as a locum tenens member of a National Physicians Group. In 1999 he began working with The Indian Health Service, with locations including Browning, Montana and Belcourt, North Dakota, finally retiring in 2005. Dr. Larson practiced medicine for over 50 years.

Dr. Larson's professional memberships include the Story County Medical Society, American Medical Association, Iowa State Medical Society, and Iowa Chapter American Academy of Pediatrics of which he was an officer. Outside of work he enjoyed sports, hunting, reading and music.

He was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Homer K. Larson in 1993 and granddaughter, Melissa Russo in 2005.

He is survived by his wife Arlene Bruce Larson of 32 years; daughter Deborah Larson Allen and husband Wayne of Des Moines; son, David Larson and wife, Tina of Ames and grandsons, Jonathan and Ryan Larson of Ames.

The family has requested memorial contributions be directed to Mary Greeley Medical Center Foundation in support of the Pediatrics Department or to the Madrid Home.