As I Recall
Marshall Harding Buchman, M.D.
August 2007 Draft
pre-Teen and Teenage years
was born on 22 July 1924 at the
first eighteen years of my life were spent in and near
I attended James H. Smart elementary school. The principal was Robert C. Harris.
July 1937. My 13th birthday. My dad took me to the
In the Spring of 1939, my grandmother Buchman’s uncle, Richard Gotleib Foss, or Uncle Dick, came to live with my grandparents. He would tell me stories of his time serving in the Civil War, of seeing President Lincoln and often ask, “Is H. V. Kaltenborn, a radio newscaster and commentator of that time, on yet?”
June 1939. I was promoted from the James
H. Smart elementary school to
September 1939. Age 15. I was at Eldred and Lillian Sherrick’s
December 1941. Age 17. A lazy Sunday afternoon, laying on the living
room floor, home listening to the radio and reading the comics in the Sunday newspaper
when we heard the bulletin on the radio that the Japanese had just bombed
my senior year of High School, I took and passed an examination for an Army
sponsored two-year course in meteorology at
Later in my senior year, I took and passed an examination for the Army Specialized Training Program (A.S.T.P.)
3 June 1943. Age 18. I received my Selective Service Induction Notice to appear at the induction center two weeks later.
June 1943. I graduated from
June 1943. I reported to an
next stop was Fort Benjamin Harrison,
A.S.T.P and Basic Training
(The following two chapters are from a
typewritten record which
I wrote in the Philippines in 1945, near the end of the war,
and which I reviewed, extended and revised in 2003.)
June 1943. We arrived at Fort Benjamin
My first week was spent getting equipment, getting shots and exams, and pulling details. As I had been assigned to the company supplying the K.P. (Kitchen Patrol) detail, I was on K.P. three times that first week.
July 1943. I was called to the company
headquarters and told to pack my equipment in preparation for catching a train
at 0915. Upon arriving at a higher
headquarters, I was told that I would be an acting corporal to lead sixteen
other A.S.T.P.s via train to
left Fort Benjamin Harrison via the New York Central railroad and arrived in
July 1943. We arrived at
When we initially saw the camp sign, “Home of the Tank Destroyers,” I felt that if the specialized training I had signed up for was to be destroying German tanks, then I had made a very bad choice indeed. It turned out we would be stationed there only for the Army’s standard Basic Training.
After a 14-day quarantine, during which I turned 19-years old, we of the 126th TDRTC Battalion, Company A, began our basic training – hikes, classes, details, rifle ranges, bayonet training, bivouacs and military code were all liberally scattered through the course. Some of our N.C.O.s (Non Commissioned Officers) could not get it through their thick skulls why the government should want to take us out of school, train us for the military, and then send us back to school again. It seemed as if they made things as rough for us as they could. We, however, managed to take all that they dared throw at us, and still kept a high morale. Their roughness really kept us on our toes. That summer remains in my memory as the hottest three months I have ever experienced.
the three-day infiltration course, the dirty fighting course, the demolition
course, and the Nazi village course had all been run, we were through with
Basic Training. We were in top condition
then. But for the next two months we just
sat around and awaited for our assignment to some college or university. Earlier A.S.T.P.s had gone to
November 1943. After leaving
November 1943. I enrolled at the
terms (from 31 January to 6 February 1944) we were given furloughs. At that time, for holiday breaks, and every other
opportunity I could, I went home via the Illinois Central to
March 1944. Some 800 former A.S.T.P.ers left
A favorite slogan of older members of the “Thundering Herd” Division was, “You should have been on the “D” series!” Then they would launch into some tale of how rough the D series training was. They thought that the only Army life that we knew was inside of a classroom. They had no idea that all of us had already completed the Army’s Basic Training program.
were cold, dreary and damp and it was at
early June 1944, I received my PFC (Private First Class) stripe. I was given a furlough from 4 July 1944 to 19
July 1944 and went home to
The hardest time for those of us in supply was the time of preparation for going overseas. We were responsible for seeing that we had all of our company equipment, that it was in good condition, and that each man in the company had a full issue of equipment in good condition.
November 1944. We left
8 December 1944. We boarded the H. M. S. Dominion Monarch, an English ship, and sailed from the States toward the war in the early hours of 9 December 1944. Our group was assigned to three lowest decks where, as the company commander told us upon boarding, we would, “Eat, sleep, and shit for the next two weeks.”
For fourteen days we rode the ship, or rather it rode us. The quarters were lousy and the food was even worse. Some slept on the tables in the dining room, others in hammocks. Porridge for breakfast. Salt water showers. The PX had only Reese’s Cups.
were the largest ship in the convoy, which left us all a bit concerned until we
arrived safely at
World War Two;
December 1944. Landed at
January 1945. The company armorer got
caught by M.P.s in town and was demoted back to private. I was appointed as the new company armorer, promoted
to Technician Fifth Grade and sent to armorer’s school in
the Germans making advances in the Battle of the Bulge in Europe (wearing US GI
uniforms, changing road signs and the like) NCOs from the Fighting 69th came to
Gloucester to provide everyone below the rank of Corporal with a quick Infantry
Basic Training course. If the
day while resting in my pup tent I heard a voice say, “
7 February 1945. I was given that great award, “The Good Conduct Medal,” for fooling all of my C.O.s for the period of one consecutive year into giving me “excellent” for each of my efficiency ratings.
March 1945. I managed to get a three-day
April 1945. We left
11 April 1945. We traveled to Camp Twenty Grand where we picked up our ammunition. It was here that we learned of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s death. We didn’t have much time to think about it, so we just hoped President Truman could carry on in FDR’s footsteps.
April 1945. We left Camp Twenty Grand
was our home base from 15 April to 24 April.
Most of the platoon was out doing odd jobs or looking for souvenirs. Then we crossed the Rhine at
the 12th or 13th of May 1945 we moved to Deutz, a suburb of Koln (
25 May 1945. We moved into a former Nazi neighborhood just as they moved out. Those of us in supply shared a three flat apartment. Sergeant Scully, the supply sergeant and stock clerk, had the lower flat with living room, bedroom, kitchen and bathroom. Bob Herr and I had an identical unit on the second floor. Too bad it lasted but three days.
28 May 1945. At the major’s request, we moved to Troisdorf, Germany in order to take part in a parade to award a couple of G.I.s and an officer Purple Heart Medals for running over a mine that some Jerry had probably placed for G.I.s who were close behind, but instead got some “lucky” boys out souvenir hunting weeks later.
June 1945. We left
Bob Herr and I sure saw some beautiful country while we rode in the seat of the unit bulldozer which was being towed on a flatbed trailer behind one of the company trucks. (Now that I think about it, it might not have been the softest, or the safest, seat I have ever had.)
staging area at
Most of us went on a pass to Marseille only once. There we saw some of the dirtiest and unsanitary habits and actions that we could imagine in what was a supposedly civilized country.
July 1945. We set sail on the U.S.S.
General S. D. Sturgis (none of us having any idea who he was), a Navy troop
transport carrying about 3,000 G.I.s.
All in all, the trip was 42 days from Marseille, through the Straits of
Gibraltar, the Panama Canal, across the International Dateline, to
the way we disembarked only once, on 22 July, my 21st birthday, at the Atlantic
port to the
exited the canal and entered the
12 August 1945. With all due celebration, and the initiation of all officers not previously initiated into the “Imperivm Neptvni Regis,” we crossed the Equator. The “initiation” involved requiring the officers to jump off a diving board and swim across an improvised pool of salt water and garbage. The rest of us were initiated into the “Ancient Order of the Deep,” without the required “ceremony.”
August 1945. Three days later, at 0808
ship’s time while anchored off the coast of
rumors flew around the ship that we would immediately turn around and head back
to the States. But that was not to
be. Instead we found ourselves on our “
August 1945. We disembarked in L.C.I.s
We’ve moved more times in less time than any circus could ever hope to. Always just missing the fighting. Maybe they will give us an “also ran” ribbon. We’ve now moved another 90 miles north of Bagabag where I sit writing this for some unknown reason, and you’re reading it for an even more unknown reason.
From now on our future hangs on hopes. We were lucky that General Yamashita surrendered when he did for he had about thirty or forty thousand troops in the hills north of here.
Now we hope that we are merely marking time until we go home, we hope.
(End of 1945 typewritten record.)
Our battalion’s major job at this time was to restore some mountainside roads. This we understood was to enable General Yamashita’s surrendered and ill troops to be transported out. Our troops would attempt to fill in and restore roads during the day, only to have it rain at night and wash out even more than before. Finally, I was told that Japanese rifles were dumped in, soil was dozed on top of them, we had a brief dry spell and the fill finally held.
On an extremely sad note, during the reconstruction a truck carrying troops from a fill site was returning to base, and stalled out in a stream bed. I was told that a wall of water came down from the mountains and by sheer force took the truck and thirteen G.I.s on board down the stream. They all died.
October 1945. We returned to
19 December 1945. I was promoted to Technician Fourth Grade. My duties? Technically speaking I was a chaplain’s assistant charged with maintaining the company library and via my jeep driver, a guy named, “New York L. Ferachio,” picking up and returning the movie film to and from the Naval base each morning.
Our 1268th battalion’s final duty prior to being disbanded was to convert the former Navy Seabee base into a temporary housing area for U.S.O. entertainers. With posts, burlap and barbwire we were to maze the area to separate married from single as well as colored from white. That accomplished we were disbanded and deactivated.
was then assigned to a Mareno Engineer Depot in
my A.S.C. 40 point level for discharge (based on tenure, number of battles,
etc.) came up and I left
28 March 1946. I received an honorable discharge and was officially “separated from service.”
declined an offer to apply to O.C.S (Officer’s
April 1946. Spent several days looking for a job, but no one was interested in offering a position to a returned G.I. who had plans to go off to college only four months later. Dad got me a temporary job at Fisher Brothers as a stock clerk for 75 cents an hour. At dad’s suggestion, I paid my mother a dollar a day for room and board.
eligible for the G.I. Bill, I thought I would return to the
1946. I enrolled at
1948 (or 1949). Painted the outside of
Grandmother Buchman’s house at
1950. I received a telegram from Harry
R. Davidson, the Superintendent of the New Albany Indiana School Corporation,
offering a position as a mathematics teacher with a starting salary of
$2,650.00 per year. I moved to
1951. Completed the second of two summer
school sessions at Purdue toward my Master’s degree. That fall, I took a room in the home of Mrs.
Irma Hammond at
1951. I met Winifred Geddes for the
first time thanks to an introduction by a fellow teacher, Milo Eiche. (
that year, with Milo Eiche’s help, I learned to drive and bought my first car,
a 1949, 2-door green Chevy which dad had found for me in
August 1952. I completed graduate
12 December 1952. Faculty Christmas Party Poem written and recited by Maxine Largent:
“Marshall Buchman, that eligible bachelor,
Should resolve, and mean it, too
That never again will he hold out
A whole, long, Leap Year through.
“Winifred Geddes – now she is the one
Who keeps Buchman feeling meek.
She should resolve to set aside
A “Be-Kind-To-Marshall” Week.
October 1953. I applied for admission to the University of Louisville School of Medicine and was accepted for the 1955 class pending completion of some 22 hours of required pre-med coursework. I tendered my resignation from my faculty position effective at the end of the 1953-1954 school year.
December 1953. Christmastime. I asked for permission from Winifred’s dad, Frank Geddes, who granted his consent, and proposed marriage to Winifred. She accepted and we were engaged.
June 1954. Winifred and I were married
completed the required pre-med courses at the
Fall 1954. I completed the required pre-med coursework, including a chemistry class that had a wrong answer in the back of the book (I was the only one to get the answer correct on the exam), and another where a fellow student apparently swapped samples with me; and began my studies at the University of Louisville Medical School.
January 1958. Our son Joseph Geddes
Buchman was delivered at
worked as an extern at
June 1959. Earned a Doctor of Medicine
degree from the University of
Was one of seven interns at the Saint
1959. Purchased home and office at
1 July 1960. Obtained my medical license.
Family Life and the Practice of Medicine
July 1960. Opened the office with
Winifred as my RN/receptionist, and began the practice of medicine. Held staff privileges at both Saint Edwards
6 July 1960. 2:00 p.m. Saw my first patient, John Ganley. At that time an office call was $4.00.
I served as the secretary of the Floyd County Memorial Hospital Medical Staff for several years in the 1960s, then as vice president in 1968 and as president of the medical staff in 1969.
Albany Mayor Garnett (Tuffy) Inman appointed me to the
1965. Took our first vacation since opening
the office. (Spent the first five years
paying off debts to Mrs. Murphy ($1,000.00) for the dining room set and office
furniture and Frank and Inez Geddes ($5,000.00).) We went to
1966. Went back to Gatlinburg where it
rained every day. Escaped briefly to
12 March 1969. Winifred’s uncle, Ernest Ira Geddes expired.
1 May 1969. My dad, Ross Buchman, passed away from intractable cardiac failure.
13 July 1969. Winifred’s dad, Frank Isom Geddes, passed away.
I served as a delegate to the Indiana Medical Society conventions in 1969 and 1970 and served as the president of the Floyd County Medical Society in 1971.
served on the Medical Staff of Silvercrest Tuberculosis Hospital from 1970 to
1972, when it closed. It later reopened
as the Silvercrest Children’s
1973. Our first vacation in
26 May 1974. Winifred’s mother, Inez Geddes, passed away.
1976. Joe graduated from
1980. Joe earned a Bachelor of Science
30 October 1980. My mother, Dessie Buchman, passed away.
1982. Stayed in Gatlinburg in the “Club
Chalet” time share we had purchased the year before. Attended World’s Fair in
1982. Joe was accepted as an incoming
MBA student by the Krannert Graduate School of Management at
Summer 1983. Purchased Tree Tops timeshare near Gatlinburg.
11 July 1983. Winifred’s brother, Vaughn Geddes, passed away.
1984. Joe completed the MBA program a
semester early (64 credit hours in three semesters) and we attended his
December graduation ceremony in a ballroom of the Purdue University Union
building. The following month he began
his PhD studies, sadly, back at
1986. Joe accepted a position on the
1988. Joe resigned from Western Michigan
to accept a position at The University of Tennessee in
1989. We agreed to sell our home at
31 December 1989. I retired from office practice.
My receptionists over the years were Winifred initially, Mary Pat Murphy, Betty Smith, Margaret Yates Hanson, Norma Lone, Brenda Taylor, Vicki Dolan Cline, Peggy Harris, Lisa Hawes, and Winifred again from 1978 to 1989 with her “fill in” Jane Corrao our neighbor.
Oldest patients cared for were John Stone who lived to be 106 years old (101 to 106 under my care) and Sadie Bartle who lived to be 103 (87 to 103 under my care).
1992. Visited Gatlinburg for two weeks
and Joe in his new home, on
Thanksgiving 1992. Joe brought Cindy Arnim and her two daughters, Kelsey (5) and Hayley (1) home for Thanksgiving dinner. They became engaged the following weekend.
July 1993. My 69th birthday. Winifred and I took our first flight together
(and only the second one in my life (the first having been for perhaps 20 or 30
minutes on my 13th birthday). We flew
1994. We returned to
December 1994. Just before the early
evening Christmas Eve services at
1997. We flew to
1998. Winifred and I flew back to
8 April 1998. Winifred fell off a couch, while standing on it to polish a wall mirror, and fractured her left radius.
6 1999. The
FAITHFUL PUBLIC SERVANT LEAVES BOARD OF HEALTH
AFTER 34 YEARS by Dale Moss
sheriff, a judge, a commissioner –
Dr. Marshall Buchman left as well.
retired from a
But if only the other departments were noticed, Buchman didn’t mind. He didn’t join the new board in 1964 for attention, and he didn’t expect it when he left. “Somebody had to do it,” Buchman said of an appointive tenure that may be unmatched locally.
“And I’ve enjoyed doing it.”
Those who know Buchman’s contributions know they’ll be immensely missed. “There aren’t any replacements for him,” said Dr. Everett Bickers, the county health officer. They say Buchman not only made every quarterly meeting but also made every meeting more meaningful. “Mr. Dependability,” Bickers called Buchman. From the grammar of the minutes to the objectives of soil tests to the details of disease screenings, Buchman invariably had questions and suggestions. “He always was willing to listen, and he did his homework,” said Cindy Andres, clinic director.
But Buchman never blamed or obstructed. “He’s always been very fair, very interested, very thorough,” said Jan Craig, another longtime board member. Ever positive and uniquely wise, Buchman guided and pitched in. “He gently prodded me in the proper direction, and he’s so kind in that manner,” said Harriet Chalfant, board chairwoman. “That doesn’t sound like a lot, bit it really is.”
Health departments that expect too much of the public or too little are the ones under fire. Floyd’s is steadfastly middle of the road, a course that not surprisingly reflects Buchman’s low-key approach.
Buchman urged that neither the law nor common sense be ignored, Bickers said. He insisted on progress – ambitious vaccination and prenatal programs come to mind. He was happiest when the public was happy.
Buchman is getting out now in part because the getting was good. The department is overdue for controversy – perhaps regarding an expansion of suburban sewers that Bickers favors – a part that Buchman doesn’t covet.
“It’s time to step aside while it has still been fun,” he said, “I want to go out feeling fine.
Buchman is also 74, and he’s been away from medical practice for nearly a decade. He feels good personally but a bit out of touch professionally to represent physicians on the board to his own high standards. “There’s a time (to retire), and I think this is a good time,” he said.
Fort Wayne native, Buchman came to New Albany not to be a doctor but to teach
math, which he did at the old Spring Street Junior High. Always interested in medicine, though, he
went to medical school in
that point Buchman semi-retired, helping at the state’s Silvercrest Children’s
Asked to serve on the board by the late New Albany Mayor Garnett “Tuffy” Inman, Buchman agreed because it was a way to teach again. As he tried to teach patients to be healthy, he tried to teach the public likewise.
He did so for many years without pay and then for many years with very little pay (about $530 per year). He did so despite the time it took from his private practice.
Obviously, he did so without broad appreciation or so much as a public acknowledgement. No matter. Buchman hadn’t thought about how he would like to be thought of until I asked.
“I hope they’d say I did a good job. I was interested and concerned and dedicated,” he said.
“And if they didn’t say anything, that’s all right too.”
1999. Joe accepted an appointment as a
visiting associate professor at
September 1999. Joe, Cindy, the kids, Winifred and I all met at the French Lick Spring Hotel in order to attend the dedication ceremony for the partial restoration of the nearby West Baden Springs hotel. The Friday evening ceremony featured a horse show with show horses, a variety of carriages, an orchestra on the lawn, and a tour of the restored portion of the West Baden Springs facility.
our return to
2000. Joe accepted a second year’s
2000. We visited their home on
5 April 2001. Winifred fell in her bedroom. From that time on she had increasingly limited function in her left arm. She was hospitalized at Floyd Memorial on 25 April and transferred to the Southern Indiana Rehabilitation Hospital on 27 April 2001. She was diagnosed with total immobilization syndrome, essential hypertension, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and atherosclerotic dementia, mild.
24 May 2001. Winifred was admitted to Providence Retirement Home. She would not return home. I visited twice a day and fed her all of her evening and Sunday noon time meals.
May 2001. Kelsey’s 13th birthday. Joe resigned from Utah Valley State College
to remain in
29 June 2003. Winifred had a syncopal (momentary unconscious) episode and remained much weaker.
July 2003. After an all-night flight
went back to the nursing home for a brief visit before dinner. Over dinner at a nearby Cracker Barrel
restaurant Joe asked me where I had been when my mother (his grandmother) had
died. Winifred and I had also gone out
to dinner after visiting my mother in the hospital. She passed away in the hospital from a second
heart attack while we were away at dinner.
Joe and I quickly finished eating and returned to
received a call on Joe’s cell phone from a
Winifred’s funeral services were well conducted and attended with visitation at the funeral home on 6 July and a memorial service at Trinity on 7 July. Kelsey produced a beautiful computer slide show which was shown on a small screen at the funeral home, and later on the large screen projector at the church.
that summer Joe and Cindy sold their
September 2003. Joe flew back from
We visited the gravesite of Marshall O. Buchman, the gravesite of the A. O. Buchman family, including Uncle Dick, and the Joseph Harding family (all in Lindenwood), the Robert and Cora Harding family gravesite including my parents Ross and Dessie Buchman (in the I.O.O.F. cemetery near New Haven), and Henry and Louisa Woods (my paternal grandmother’s parents) in a cemetery among the cornfields near Decatur, Indiana. We visited the Taylor Chapel and searched, without success, for my maternal grandmother’s parents, George and Mary Miller.
took us to the Coney Island Hot Dog Stand and we drove by my old home on
April 2004. On what would have been
Winifred’s 83rd birthday, Joe and the four grandchildren drove to
July 2004. Joe flew to
following day we toured the World War II memorial, the FDR memorial from which
we walked to the Jefferson Memorial and back, the Lincoln Memorial, the
Pentagon, Supreme Court and some of the Smithsonian complex. Joe suggested I might like to visit
July 2005. Joe and family came to
came a visit to the
All in all, it was another enjoyable, educational, and entertaining birthday tour.
October 2005. Joe and I drove together to
2005. Flew to
12 March 2006. (On what would have been
my Dad’s 113th birthday.) Joe visited
June 2006. I flew Comair to
had been encouraging me to go to
7 June 2006. We visited Hoover Dam and after a late afternoon nap and dinner at Denny’s, we attended two shows – 8:00p.m. Danny Gans, impressionist/comedian at the Mirage, and the 10:00pm production of O by Cirque Du Solei at the Belligio. For the latter, thanks to a “ticket broker” Joe had found, we had front row center seats, got splashed a bit with water, and Joe was pulled from the audience to dance on the stage with one of the two clown performers in the show.
8 June 2006. After sleeping in from the previous night’s performances, we had lunch at the Nine Fine Irishmen and saw the afternoon Mac King comedy magic show at Harrah’s. One the way out of town, we visited the Freemont Street experience and had ice cream sundaes at the original Golden Gate Hotel and Casino.
June 2006. We arrived back in
Joe and I attended the Davinci Code movie, and later Over the Hedge with Anna and Kristian on the 10th and 11th. I also read the Purpose Driven Life before leaving.
It was another enjoyable and memorable visit with family.
July 2006. Joe arrived in
August 2006. Joe returned to
August 2006. We visited the Wright
Brothers memorial near
2006. I flew to
June 2007. Joe, Cindy, Kristian and Anna
June 2007. Headed from