John E. Eckerle M.D. passed from this life to eternal life on July 23, 2020, at the age of 95. He was born in Jasper, IN. He was preceded in death by his parents, Anton J. and Rosina Fink Eckerle, his three sisters, four brothers, their spouses, three nephews and one niece.
He was a 1942 graduate of Jasper High School.
John was a charter member of the Jasper High School Band and Orchestra, playing the French horn. He was also a member of the Jasper Municipal (City) Band and the Hayesville Band.
During World War II, John served as a German interpreter in the POW camps in America and was an administrative NCO. For his meritorious service he was awarded the Army Commendation Medal.
He was a proud 1949 graduate and lifelong supporter of Purdue University where he obtained his Bachelor of Science degree, was active in student government and was a member of the military marching band.
John obtained his Doctor of Medicine in 1958 from the University of Louisville. He did his hospital residency at St. Elizabeth Hospital in Dayton, OH.
Dr. Eckerle served as Medical Director at Reynolds Metal Co. in Louisville, KY. During that time he was instrumental in organizing the first Governor’s Conference on Occupational Health and Safety in the state of Kentucky. For this effort, he was awarded a membership in the Royal Order of Kentucky Colonels. He also served on the Kentucky Governor’s Council on Alcoholism in Industry. Other medical endeavors included surgical thoracic assistant, Silvercrest Hospital, New Albany, IN, and staff physician at Dupont Chemical Co. and General Electric Appliance Park.
Dr. Eckerle established a primary care office of medicine on Frankfort Ave. in Louisville, KY, a solo practice he sustained in excess of 30 years. During this time he served on the Executive Committee of St. Anthony Hospital, Louisville, KY, where he treated his patients. He was also a member of the medical staff of Kentucky Baptist, Highland Baptist, Baptist East and Suburban Hospitals, all in Louisville, KY.
Dr. Eckerle is survived by his wife of 70 years, M. Margaret Davis Eckerle, his children, Diane Eckerle, John D. Eckerle (Sheila Lee), Judy E. Quinlan (Tom), Bruce T. Eckerle (Kim) and his heart-adopted son, Charlie Bacigalupi, seven grandchildren, Jennifer M. Kessler (Kelly), Nathan F. Johnson (Lauren Gawthrop), Claire Quinlan, Colleen Quinlan (Jon Olsen, fiancé), Trey Quinlan (Giselle), Christin Eckerle, Catherine Eckerle and many cherished nieces, nephews and their families.
The family would like to express deep gratitude to Dr. Eckerle’s revered and dedicated colleagues, whom he considered friends, with helping sustain his life in his later years, as well as the staff at Baptist East Health Hospital. The family would also like to thank the Nazareth Home Administration and Rehab staff for their skilled and compassionate care in his final weeks of life.
Because of virus restrictions, there will be no visitation. Family and friends are invited to a Celebration of Life Mass on Wednesday, July 29, 2020, at 11 a.m. at St. James Catholic Church, 1826 Edenside Ave., Louisville, KY, 40204. After Mass there will be a military salute to honor his WW II service. (Masks required in the church.)
There will be a private burial.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, memorial donations can be made to St. James Church music ministry, Eternal Word Television Network, specifying daily Mass broadcasts (5817 Old Leeds Rd., Irondale, AL 35210) or your favorite charity.