Michael D. Blackburn
December 9, 1945 - April 3, 2012
Michael D. Blackburn M.D., 66, of Columbia, Mo., died Tuesday, April 3, 2012, at the Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans Hospital in Columbia, Mo. Michael was born December 9, 1945, to Muriel and Jule Blackburn Jr. He was preceded in death by his parents. Michael Blackburn married Kathleen Buschmeyer on September 25, 1976, and the couple honeymooned in Quebec City, Quebec. Michael served in the United States Army from 1966-69, with one year in Vietnam, where his interest in medicine began. He suffered head injuries, burns from his armored vehicle's gas tank exploding and when trying to pull a comrade from their burning vehicle, shrapnel wounds and exposure to toxins used for defoliations. He rose from an enlisted Infantryman to Sergeant, received the Purple Heart, the Sharpshooter's Rifle with cluster and four other medals of honor. After discharge from the Army, Michael returned home to help his father start a cable business in Carrollton, Mich., titled "The Saginaw Sling" which provided needed equipment for boats in the Saginaw, Mich., bay area and also enabled his father to make an independent living. Michael Blackburn earned an undergraduate degree in Zoology from the College of Literature, Science and Arts at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor in 1971. He was accepted into the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Medical School in 1971 and graduated with an M.D. in 1975. Dr. Blackburn completed his surgery Internship at the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1976. Dr. Blackburn and wife, Kathleen, transferred to Jacksonville, Fla, where he completed an Emergency Medicine Residency at the University of North Florida-Jacksonville. He served as Chief Resident in his senior year there. Dr. Blackburn accepted his first position as a Board Certified Emergency Medicine Physician at North Memorial Hospital in Minneapolis, Minn. While the couple enjoyed Minnesota fishing, wildlife, the cultural environment and bicycling around the lakes of Minneapolis, they missed being closer to their families and the warmer climate of Missouri. Dr. Blackburn accepted an Emergency Medicine position at Boone County Hospital in Columbia and served as Chairman of the Disaster Committee for 12 years with a special interest in earthquake preparedness. He became the Director of Emergency Services at Boone Hospital Center in 1989. Michael was described by many as unpretentious, compassionate and especially good with injured children. After Dr. Blackburn's disabilities began, he resided at the Veterans Home in Mexico, Mo. for three years and at the Harry S. Truman Memorial Veterans Hospital Community Living Center in Columbia for 11 years. Dr. Blackburn was a member of the American Medical Association, the Missouri State Medical Association, the American College of Emergency Physicians, the American Board of Emergency Medicine, both the University of Michigan and Missouri Alumni Associations, the American Legion, the VFW, the Columbia United Church of Christ and served as President of his neighborhood association. Dr. Blackburn's hobbies were reading, the guitar, woodcarving, furniture building, canoeing, fishing, camping with Kathleen, cross country skiing and blading snow for his country neighbors on his John Deere tractor. Dr. Blackburn is survived by his wife, Kathleen; a daughter, Katrina; two brothers, Bruce and wife Rhonda and Danny and wife Connie; a sister, Julie Blackburn Atty; three nieces, Lori, Rachael and Erin; two nephews, Brian and Sam; many cousins and their families; his loving mother-in-law, Eleanor Buschmeyer; a brother-in-law, Daniel Buschmeyer; two aunts and many cousins and their families in Kathleen's family. Dr. Michael Blackburn will forever be loved for who he was as an individual, for what he accomplished in life and what he hoped to yet accomplish. Je'taime! Visitation will be from 6 to 7 p.m., Monday, April 9, 2012, at Parker Funeral Service. Services will be held at 11 a.m., Tuesday, April 10, 2012, at St. Peter's United Church of Christ in Washington, Mo. Visitation will be from 10 to 11 a.m. Tuesday at the church. Burial will be in Oak Haven Memorial Gardens in Hermann, Mo. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.parkerfuneralservice.com
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