On Nov. 6, John R. Kelly, D.D.S. died in Scottsdale after a precipitous illness.
Dr. Kelly joined my medical practice, at the opening of the Payson Hospital, almost 50 years ago to the day, seeing patients every Tuesday, while maintaining his principal practice in Phoenix.
As his oldest patient in Payson, I soon learned that he was a master at dental anesthesia, quality workmanship and of exemplary character.
One of his chief goals was to do the most painless dental surgery possible for his patients. To date, I haven't found another practitioner to equal his technique with the needle.
Among his many qualities was the strong concern and compassion he had for his family, friends, patients and fellow travelers; from which I benefited and learned much.
John and his family fell in love with Payson and its trout streams some 60 years ago, when they built their cabin at Thompson Draw.
One of the highlights of his attraction to the Rim Country were the lion hunts that Malcolm Pyle, big-game guide, took us on from time to time.
It will be a very long time before we see another humanitarian with the love and compassion for his fellow beings, as demonstrated by the lifetime of this man.
His concern and love for mankind, in general, made a deep impression on those who knew him; especially in my life.
May God assist us in coping with the large void in the lives of those who were privileged to have known him.
D.B. Gilbert, M.D.