On Friday, March 10, 2023 Robert Dexter “Doc” Harry died peacefully at his residence in Denver, Colorado. Doc was born on April 28, 1937 in York, Nebraska to Robert E. and Esther Marie (Beckord) Harry.
In high school he excelled in academics and athletics, receiving a Regent Scholarship and All-State Honors in football and basketball.
Doc attended the University of Nebraska, where he was a three-year letterman in basketball. In 1958, he had the opportunity to guard both Bob Boozer (Kansas State) and Wilt Chamberlain (Kansas University), while helping the Huskers upset the number one and four ranked teams in the country. Doc held Chamberlain to his lowest scoring game in Wilt’s college career, and Wally Provost coined the name “Giant Killer” as a moniker for Bob.
After college, he served three years with the Marine Corps artillery, including an eighteen month Far East Tour. He was honorably discharged with the rank of Captain and enrolled in medical school at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC). During this time, he met the love of his life, Maryanne, at the 1964 Orange Bowl in Miami. Their romance would last fifty-seven years. Doc was the Class President of his Medical School class three of four years; he received membership in the Alpha Omega Alpha National Honor Society; and was the recipient of the Upjohn Achievement Award for Scholarship. Following medical school, he spent five years as a surgery resident at the University of Nebraska and served on the faculty of the UNMC surgery department.
In 1976, Doc, Maryanne and their four boys moved to Lexington, Nebraska. He maintained his private practice in Lexington for many years and touched the lives of nearly everyone in this small town. He went on to help develop the Nebraska Statewide Trauma System and was chair of the Nebraska Committee on Trauma. He was a Governor of the American College of Surgeons, Nebraska Board of Medical Examiners, Southwestern Surgical Congress, Dawson County Medical Society, and the Nebraska Medical Society.
In 2004, Doc officially retired from Medicine and moved to Denver, Colorado where he and Maryanne spent most of their retirement. They both enjoyed their time in Santa Barbara at Birnam Wood Country Club in addition to many overseas trips to Europe and cruises in the Caribbean with family. Family was the most important thing to Doc. He loved raising his four boys, spending time teaching them both academics as well as athletics, ranging from football and basketball to sailing and shooting.
No matter his accomplishments personally or professionally, there was only one North Star, the guiding light for Doc, his beloved Maryanne. Their love was timeless, and they genuinely enjoyed spending time together. In many ways they were opposites, but a more complete couple would be hard to find. The most treasured legacy of Doc and Maryanne was their love for each other and their children.
Doc is survived by Robert D. Jr. and Christine (Owen) and their three children, Owen, Wallis, and Duncan; Mike and Megan (Malecek) and their two children, Cameron and Milly; Bill and Kellie (Clifton) and their two children, Graham and Emily; and Steve and Nancy (Hinderlie) and their three children, Robert, George and Elizabeth.
In lieu of a memorial please plant a tree on Arbor Day and think of the good times you may have had with Bob and Maryanne.
As Dad often said, “May the wind be always at your back and may the road rise up to meet you.”