The Life of Dr. Robert L Jenkins

ROBERT ''JENKS'' L. JENKINS JR. M.D SEBRING - Funeral services will be held today at 6 p.m. at the Higgins-Reardon Funeral Homes, Austintown Chapel for Robert “Jenks” L. Jenkins Jr., M.D., 94, who died peacefully Tuesday morning at Alliance Community Hospital. Dr. Jenkins was born in Beaver Falls, Pa., to Robert L. Jenkins Sr. and Naomi Wintry Smith on June 13, 1922. He lived in Rochester, Pa., Beaver, and Erie, Pa., and later in Cleveland, where he went to elementary school until the fifth grade. During the depression, his family moved back to Beaver, where he graduated from Beaver High School in 1940, and was a member of the National Honor Society. He played the trumpet in several big band/dance band groups and belonged to the Musicians’ Union. His ambition was to be a public school music teacher. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1942, and was trained to be a laboratory technician. Subsequently, he was selected for the Army Special Training Program and was sent to Georgetown University for Pre-Med training. Later, he was stationed at Walter Reed Hospital until a space opened at the George Washington (GW) Medical School. He graduated from GW in 1949, having been inducted into the Smith Reed Russell Honor Society. He passed his medical boards while still in medical school and later was inducted into the Nu Sigma Nu Honor Fraternity and the William Beaumont Research Society. While in medical school, he met and married Mary Jane Harrelson in 1948. They came to Youngstown where he served his internship and medical residency for four years with the Youngstown Hospital Association. Subsequently, he served a two-year preceptorship with Dr. William Bunn Sr., who was an outstanding cardiologist in the area. Dr. Jenkins opened his own office in 1954 in Austintown and practiced medicine there until 1984. He was certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine in 1959, and recertified in 1974 and 1980. He was elected to the American College of Physicians and the American Society of Internal Medicine (ASIM), he was a lifetime member in each organization and served as a trustee for the ASIM. In 1970, he was president of the Youngstown Hospital Association medical staff and in 1972, president of the Mahoning County Medical Society. He also served as president of the Tri-County Rehabilitation Association, which later became the Ohio Rehabilitation Association. In 1978, he was appointed as a clinical assistant professor of Medicine at the newly formed, Northeast Ohio University Consortium of Medicine (NEOUCOM), now Northeast Ohio University of Medicine (NEOMED). Dr. Jenkins was a medical examiner for the Federal Aviation Association (FAA) for 20 plus years, consultant for the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation Society and served on boards for the Easter Seal Society, and the American Cancer Society, where he served as a state trustee. He was a state trustee for the Ohio Society of Internal Medicine. He is an emeritus member of the Ohio State Medical Association, the Mahoning County Medical Society, the Aerospace Medical Association and Sigma Xi. He had also been associated with the New York Academy of Sciences, American Association for the Advancement of Science, National Rehabilitation Association and the Ohio Academy of Science. In retirement, he and Mary Jane’s hobbies were traveling, photography and continued lifelong learning through Elder Hostel adventures in Canada and the United States. Their first Elder Hostel was to the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., where years before, Dr. Jenkins was administered the Hippocratic Oath, beginning his medical career. Other international trips included Europe, India, Japan, China and Africa. He belonged to the Youngstown Camera Club and entered many competitions, taking first place for several of his photographs. Dr. Jenkins had a keen interest in not only the medical well-being of his patients, but also all other aspects of human life, which gave him special rapport with all whom he came into contact. He was a beloved physician by all. Dr. Jenkins was preceded in death by his parents; his beloved wife, Mary Jane; and one great-grandson. He is survived by his son, Robert L. Jenkins III (Linda S.); and two daughters, Linda Jean Jenkins and Carol J. Navarre (Tom); as well as five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Family and friends may call today from 4 to 6 p.m. at the funeral home. In lieu of flowers of flowers, material tributes may take the form of donations to the American Cancer Society or to the American Heart Association. 

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