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LEFEVRE, George L., Dr.


Grand Rapids Herald (Grand Rapids, Michigan) 5 March 1944


Services for Dr. George L. LeFevre, 78, outstanding Muskegon physician and surgeon and civic leader, who died Friday night in his home here, will be held Tuesday at 9 a.m. in St. Jean Baptiste church, Rev. Joseph L. Poulin officiating, assisted by a number of other priests. Internment will be in St. Mary’s cemetery. Dr.LeFevre was perhaps the best known and beloved figure in this community for his generous contributions in time and works over a period of more than half a century to causes of mercy and community betterment. In most towns, perhaps, there are few persons whose endeavors and personalities cause them to belong in a real sense to the community. Such was Dr. George LeFevre. Dr. LeFevre became widely known in his city, state and nation during his more than 50 years of practice as a physician and surgeon. He had served the Michigan Medical society as its president and had also been head of the Muskegon County Medical Society. The long list of his public service also is notable, including that of chief of staff for many years at Mercy hospital, an institution which he helped obtain for the community; the Muskegon County Tuberculosis sanatorium, which he likewise aided in obtaining for this area, and over whose board of trustees he presided from the opening in 1924 until his death.


He helped write the present Muskegon commission-manager charter and was elected to the original city commission under that charter, serving five years. He had been Muskegon city physician and also county physician. Dr. LeFevre also served in 1937 as co-chairman with John G. Emery, Jr., of the successful centennial celebration in Muskegon. He was president, too, of the Muskegon Industrial Foundation, aiding in obtaining industries here, and was chairman of the board of Hackley Union bank from the time it was organized. The Catholic church bestowed the highest honor available to a layman on Dr. LeFevre in 1942, when he was made a Knight of St. Gregory by Pope Pius XII. The late Bishop Joseph C. Plagens presided in the colorful rites in St. Jean Baptiste church at which the physician was invested with the rank of papal knight. When Dr. LeFevre in 1941 observed his golden anniversary as a physician, he was honored at a testimonial banquet in Occidental hotel, and received congratulations of Pope Pius XII and physicians from all Michigan. For 16 years Dr. LeFevre was a member of the state board of registration in medicine. He was a member of the American Medical association, and of the Surgeons’ club of Mayo clinic. A year after the American College of Surgeons was formed, he was admitted to membership.


Dr. LeFevre was named emeritus chief of staff of Mercy hospital in 1942 when Dr. Eugene S. Thornton became chief. He also served on the Hackley hospital staff. The doctor had been chairman of the Republican county committee. He was a member of the Rotary club, Elks, Century club, Muskegon Country club, was active in the YMCA, and was a past grand knight of the Muskegon council, Knights of Columbus. He served as a director also of several Muskegon industrial firms. He was a state representative two terms. Above and beyond all his service, Dr. LeFevre became best beloved for his essential biggness of spirit and personality. He was unafraid, too, to stand and declare for his convictions.


Born in a log cabin on Grand Isle in Lake Champlain, he came to Muskegon with his parents in 1881, and worked in a drug store, later passing the examinations for registration in pharmacy. At the time of his death he was Michigan’s oldest registered pharmacist. He took his medical work in Hahnemann Medical college, Chicago, and began practice here in 1891.


two sons, Dr. William LeFevre, who was associated with him in practice, and Col. Louis LeFevre, in the army medical corps, who has seen service in the Pacific war zone and is now in this country. He leaves his widow, who was Eunice R. Sexton of Kansas City, Mo.; and whom he married in New York in 1931. His first wife, the former Alice Ducey, whom he married in 1894, died in 1928. He also leaves a daughter, Alice Louise, professor of library science at St. John’s university, Brooklyn; three sisters, who are Sisters Margaret Mary and Mary Alphonsus at Mercy hospital, and Mrs Dennis Monahan of Ft. Wayne, Ind.; and two brothers, Dr. C. H. LeFevre, DDS, and Walter LeFevre, both of Muskegon.

Information donated by John LeFevre to the Muskegon Genealogical Society webpage and copied here.

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