Leopold A. Viger, M.D.
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KENNEBUNK -- Leopold A. Viger, M.D., of Kennebunk Beach, passed away on Jan. 10, 2012, after a brief stay at Maine Medical Center.
He was born on April 29, 1926, to Arthur and Leona (Hevey) Viger in Biddeford. He spent his childhood in Salem, Mass., and Biddeford.
Upon graduation from Saint Louis High School in 1944, he continued his education at Saint Michael's College and the University of Montreal Medical School.
Upon graduation from medical school, Dr. Viger completed his internship at Chelsea Naval Hospital in Chelsea, Mass. Subsequently, he was sent to Newport, R.I., where he was the squadron physician for five destroyers. The destroyers were deployed to cruise the coast of Korea in the Sea of Japan up to the 38th parallel. Often during this period, Dr. Viger had to respond to emergencies and was transferred from one destroyer to another via cable chair.
After his service on the coast of Korea, he was transferred to the Portsmouth Naval Hospital. Upon completion of three years of service as a Navy physician, Dr. Viger established his medical practice in Biddeford.
On June 6, 1956, he married Jeannine Boutin of Biddeford at Saint Joseph's Church of Biddeford and together they raised four children, Suzanne, Joseph, Michelle and Celeste.
Always community-minded, he was the attending physician for the Biddeford High School athletic programs during the first 15 years of his practice. He was a true healthcare professional, never refusing treatment to patients regardless of their ability to pay. Dr. Viger had 365 admissions per year, with admissions doubling during the summer months due to the influx of tourists.
He was a member of the American Society of Internal Medicine, The American College of Physicians and the American College of Cardiology.
In the 1980s, Governor Brennan appointed him to the Maine Board of Registration of Medicine, where he served as Secretary; Dr. Viger was the first Franco-American to serve on the Board. In addition, he was very involved in recruiting new physicians to the Webber Hospital (now Southern Maine Medical Center). He, with the help of Drs. Thomas Anton and Robert Lafond, established the first coronary unit at the Webber Hospital.
Dr. Viger was a lifelong member of the Saint Louis Alumni Association and helped coordinate his reunions for the 25th, 40th and 50th years. His distinguished
Leopold A. Viger, M.D.
contributions to his undergraduate alma mater, Saint Michael's College, were recognized in 1992 via his designation as Alumnus of the Year.
He was a lifelong member of Webhannet Golf Club, Kennebunk Beach, where his family had a summer home for many years, prior to settling in that community full-time 1993.
Regarding his family, he most proud of taking time to ski with them at King Pine in New Hampshire and spending summers at Kennebunk Beach. Over the years, he and Jeannine took extended vacations to Rome, Paris and London.
After his retirement in September 1991, Dr. Viger and his wife spent their winters in Vero Beach, Fla., and traveled extensively, in particular taking two months in 2001 to visit Provence, France, enjoying the region by taking a number of day trips.
In his retirement, Dr. Viger enjoyed golf, long walks and reading as many history and biographical books as the Kennebunk and Vero Beach libraries could furnish. He especially enjoyed time with his children and grandchildren.
He and his wife were communicants of Saint Martha's Parish. Above all, he was a loving father and husband who did everything he could to ensure a good life for his family.
In addition to Jeannine, his wife of 55 years, Dr. Viger is survived by his daughter Suzanne Randall and her husband Stephen of Scarborough, and their twin sons, Timothy and Thomas; his son Joseph Viger and his wife Sheila of Rye, N.Y., and their children Joseph Jr. and Samantha; his daughter Michelle Kehoe and her husband Brian of Shrewsbury, Mass., and their daughter Megan; his daughter Celeste Viger of Portland; and his brother Marcel Viger and his wife Therese of Biddeford and their three children and families.
A funeral Mass will be held at St. Martha's Catholic Church in Kennebunk on Saturday, Jan. 14, at 11 a.m. The family will receive attendees beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday at St. Martha's. Arrangements are in care of Bibber Memorial Chapel, 67 Summer St., Kennebunk. www.bibberfuneral.com.
In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations in
Leopold A. Viger's name to:
Saint Michael's College
P.O. Box 256
Colchester, Vermont 05439
Attn.: Cynthia Cheney
Bibber Memorial Chapel
67 Summer Street Kennebunk, ME 04043
Published in Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Jan. 12, 2012