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Dr. Thomas Francis Moore

Thomas Francis Moore, M.D., age 90, passed away on February 20, 2023. Born in Detroit, Michigan to Irene and Francis Moore on January 3, 1933, he was a graduate of Detroit Catholic Central High School in 1950. Also, a graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science in 1954, he was fortunate that his paternal Uncle Tom provided the financial support for his first 2 years at Notre Dame. He then worked the following 2 summers as a seaman on the Great Lakes before his graduation from Notre Dame. He is a retired member of the National Maritime Union. It was during his first semester of Law School at Notre Dame that his interest in medicine was stimulated while working as an Orderly evenings and weekends at St. Joseph Hospital in South Bend, Indiana (where he eventually served his 1-year Medical Internship). Having taken no science or pre-medical courses while at Notre Dame, he spent the summer of 1954 taking day and night pre-med courses at Loyola University in Chicago followed by another full year of such courses in order to begin Medical School at Wayne University in Detroit in the fall of 1955. His financial support during this trying time was offered by 2 brothers whose family owned a Photographic Studio in Hamtramck, Michigan.

While he was in his sophomore year at Notre Dame, he attended a New Year’s Eve party in the Detroit area where he met the love of his life, Elenore Kiesewetter and was fortunate enough to remember her phone number, the last 5 digits of which matched the numbers of the Quarterback and 2 Ends (now called Tight End and Wide Receiver) of Notre Dame’s varsity football team. Tom and Ellie were married on September 1, 1956 after his first year of Medical School. He graduated from Medical School in 1959 and after the one year Internship in South Bend, the family moved to Miami, Arizona where he spent 5 years as a Family Practitioner including an active obstetrical practice.

Less than a month after moving from Miami to Phoenix in the summer of 1965 to join 2 other Family Practice physicians, he contracted Coccidiodal (Valley Fever) Meningitis. He was the first known Arizona survivor of this rare form of Valley Fever after months of appropriate treatment at Springville County Hospital in Springville, California.  After 2 more years of Family Practice in Phoenix, he returned with his family to the Detroit area in 1967 for a 3-year Residency in Ophthalmology at the Kresge Eye Institute, followed by a 1-year Fellowship in Pediatric Ophthalmology in Detroit and Washington, D.C. After his Fellowship, the family returned to Phoenix, and he was the first Pediatric Ophthalmologist in Arizona beginning his office practice in January 1972. He continued this office practice until December 31, 2018 but also continued to staff the Children’s Rehabilitative Services (CRS) Eye Clinic 2 half days per week (which he had done for more than 40 years), until November 30, 2020.

Tom and Ellie loved to travel and their first trip out of the US was to Tahiti in 1976. They also traveled to several other countries including Ireland where Tom discovered his living ancestral relatives in Cappamore (near Limerick). They enjoyed going to Las Vegas “slot tournaments” for several years as well. Since 1975 they vacationed with family for a couple of weeks each summer in a lakeside cottage on the real “Golden Pond” in Maine and enjoyed fresh lobster dinners on the porch.

A fellow of the American College of Surgeons, he was a past President of the Arizona Ophthalmological Society and was the first Chairman of the American Academy of Ophthalmology Political Action Committee (OPHTHPAC) beginning in 1986 and received the AAO’s “Hall of Fame” award in 2002. He was also the first recipient of the AAO’s Outstanding Advocate Award in 2009. Beginning in 1978 he was also the Chairman of the Ophthalmologists Political Action Committee in Arizona for more than 30 years. In this position he was an adamant advocate to protect the public from non-surgeons who want to gain surgical privileges through legislative fiat rather than through proper educational channels.

He was preceded in death by his wonderful wife of 63 years in April 2020. He is survived by 4 children (all graduates of the University of Notre Dame) Mary Ann Topping (Alex), Mitchell, Maureen Over (Tom) and Melinda Han (Layton). He is also survived by 9 grandchildren, Alyssa, Turner and Merrick Topping, Grantland and Griffin Over, and Kylie, Malorie, Dylan and Quintan Han. He is also survived by his older sister, Doris Kress and his sister-in-law Trudy Kiesewetter.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Andre House (feeds and serves the homeless in Phoenix) at P.O. Box 2014, Phoenix, AZ 85001-2014 or jminich@andrehouse.org.

A Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, April 15, 2023 at 11:00am at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, 4715 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix. Condolences may be expressed at www.whitneymurphyfuneralhome.com
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