DEDICATION OF CARILLONIC BELLS
TO THE MEMORY OF
THEODORE LeROY STORY, M. D.
Photo courtesy of Jan Whitney
(from Seaver Rice collection)
THEODORE LeROY STORY was born in Norwich, Conn., on June 24,
1888, and passed away on August 9, 1949. Between those two dates, there
remains to us the record of a rich, full life.
Of colonial American stock, he was the son of Arthur L. and Mercy L.
(Palmer) Story. Among his ancestors were men who had helped to administer
and to maintain justice in New England. From them came such ideals as self-reliance,
self-discipline, and courage, as well as loyalty to God and country.
It is little wonder, then, that he charted his course carefully as he
embarked upon his life's work. His was a real vocation - a true calling
for which he prepared himself well.
After a sound pre-medical education, first at Norwich Free Academy and
later at Trinity College, Dr. Story was graduated, with honor, from Tufts
College Medical School in Boston.
Following internship, there were several varied years, during which
he came to know the rigors of a country practice in and around the town
of Holden, Massachusetts.
It was in 1926 that Dr. Story came to Southbridge to direct the medical
activities of the American Optical Company. This venture into the field
of industrial medicine was to demand his attention for nearly a quarter
of a century. Although this would seem, at first glance, to have been a
narrowing of his horizons, it was actually a broadening. As a pioneer in
his specialty, he was one of a relatively small group of men, professional
and non-professional, who were responsible for improving the health and
safety conditions under which large segments of our population work daily.
Dr. Story was a member of the American Association of Industrial Physicians
and Surgeons and served for several years as a director of that organization.
At the same time, his active membership in the American Medical Association,
as well as in State and County groups, enabled him to blend his special
subject with the larger body of medicine as a whole.
He held a unique position in the hearts of his fellow men. As the years
went by, more and more people came to him with their problems, and he became
their respected advisor in non-medical as well as in medical matters.
In the home of this community there are to be heard many anecdotes illustrating
his keen diagnostic ability and there are memories of his many kindnesses
which made him friend as well as physician. He kept the Hippocratic Oath
And there were many times when the doctor realized that medicine and
surgery were not the answer to a patient's problem. In such a case, Dr.
Story would speak of the balm to be given by a greater Healer.
In World War I, he served his country, in uniform, as a First Lieutenant
in the United States Army Medical Corps. Later, he was Commandant of the
Veterans' Hospital in Roxbury, Massachusetts.
In World War II, in addition to his other duties, he served on the home
front, in civilian capacities, examining young men prior to their induction
into the service, and aiding in the procurement and assignment of physicians
for the Armed Forces.
Between the two conflicts, and following them, he associated himself
with organizations of fellow veterans, pledged to keep alive, by their
periodic musters, the comradeship formed during more trying times.
One such group was the local American Legion Post. Another was the 13
Club, composed of veterans for the First World War who will continue to
meet annually around Armistice Day, as long as there are members to answer
roll call. And he was the prime mover in the foundation of the local chapter
of The Military Order of the World Wars.
Not as often as he would have desired, he followed Connecticut streams
or Maine rivers in pursuit of trout or salmon. But his appreciation of
Nature went beyond the aim of a full creel. In his excursions into the
growing world about him, he was aware of birds, animals and flowers. He
was conscious of the processional of the seasons, the changed of weather,
and the peace to be found in the deep woods.
He truly realized that there were "sermons in stones, tongues in running
brooks" and that, "the groves were God's first temples."
As did his forebears before him, he went to church on Sunday and during
the remainder of the week continued to live as a Christian gentleman.
That something of his ideals and motives was appreciated is evidenced
by our gathering and its purpose tonight, as we dedicate these Carillonic
Bells in his memory.
In the old New England that Doctor loved, much praise was deemed "unseemly."
His life speaks for itself. Theodore LeRoy Story was no unworthy son of
Return to AO Medical Page
Whitney Home Page