Ronald Burton Dietrick ’49

Ronald Burton Dietrick '49Ronald Burton Dietrick, M.D. (Ron) was received by the Lord on January 30, 2015. He was born in Charlottesville, Virginia, on February 18, 1927.
After serving in the Navy in WWII, he attended Davidson College and then the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. An internship at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia, was followed by a four year surgical residency at the VA Hospital, also in Richmond.
In 1958, Ron and his family moved to South Korea to serve as medical missionaries under the auspices of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S. Twenty-six years later they returned to a practice in the U.S., and in 1994 retired to Wilmington, North Carolina.
From an early age Ron was active in the Presbyterian Church serving as an elder, Sunday School teacher and choir member. Ron was an avid reader of history, especially that of the Presbyterian Church. He was the author of several books which included a history of the Gwangju Christian Hospital in Gwangju, South Korea, where he served for so many years
After three years at the Jesus Hospital in Jeonju, Ron and the family moved to Gwangju, where he was the surgeon at Kwangju Christian Hospital (KCH), which was primarily a tuberculosis hospital. From 1967-1976, Ron served as Director of KCH, during which time it grew from a 200 to a 600 bed facility, training residents in all of the major medical specialties.
In 1976, Ron resigned as Director, and turned the directorship of the hospital over to a Korean physician. He continued as Medical Director, concentrating on surgery and training surgical residents until he and his wife returned to the U. S. in 1985.
Today the legacy of Ron and his fellow missionaries continues. KCH is not only a Christian hospital giving witness and bringing healing to thousands of Koreans every year; it is also a mission hospital, sending medical teams around the globe to bring physical healing and the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Surviving are his wife of over 65 years Bess Brothers Dietrick, daughter Faith Dietrick, son Daly Dietrick (Marti), and daughter Sarah Evans (Rick), and grandchildren Nathaniel, Rebecca, and Ethan Dietrick, and Nathan, Daniel, Andrew, Jacob, and Jessica Evans.
A Memorial Service will be held at Windermere Presbyterian Church, 104 Windemere Road, Wilmington, NC on March 21,2015, at 11:00 a.m., with visitation preceding the service at the church from 10:00 -10:45 a.m.
Memorials may be made to the Windermere Presbyterian Church.
Published in the Wilmington Star-News on Mar. 17, 2015