Thomas P. R. Rivers ’57

Thomas Pinckney Rutledge Rivers, M.D., 86, of Charleston, South Carolina, husband of Mary West Rivers, entered into eternal rest Monday, November 30, 2020.

His funeral service will be held graveside Friday, December 4, 2020 in Magnolia Cemetery, 70 Cunnington Avenue at 1:00 p.m. Arrangements by J. Henry Stuhr, Inc. Downtown Chapel.

Tommy was born July 23, 1934, in Charleston, South Carolina, son of the late George Lamb Buist Rivers and Ethel Rutledge Rivers. He graduated from Episcopal High School and graduated from Davidson College, where he served in the Army ROTC and was a Southern Conference champion swimmer.

In 1961, he graduated from the Medical College of South Carolina. Prior to beginning his OB/GYN career, he fulfilled his Army obligation as a physician at Fort Jackson. Beginning in 1968, he became one of Charleston’s most prominent OB/GYN’s, delivering more than 7000 babies over the course of 40 years.

He also served as the Chairman of the OB/GYN Department of Bon Secours St. Francis. Tommy was a member of St. Andrews Church of Mt. Pleasant, where he served as a member of the vestry.

He was a member of the Middleton Hunt Club, a charter member of the Bachelor’s Society of Charleston, a member of the Carolina Yacht Club and a founding member of The Sportsmen. He was a senior member of the St. Andrews Society of Charleston and was a member of the St. Cecilia Society.

Anyone who knew Tommy knew his contagious passion for birds, wildlife, wildflowers and shrimping in the creeks. Known as an amateur ornithologist, he helped to rediscover the Bachman’s warbler in South Carolina.

He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Mary of Charleston, SC; seven children: Elizabeth Rivers Meadows (Glenn), Frances Rivers Slay (Brian), Elise Rivers Kennedy (Sean), Thomas Pinckney Rutledge Rivers, Jr. (Lisa), Caroline Pinckney “Cacky” Rivers (Angelo), William Thomas Rivers (Charlotte) and Ellen Rutledge Rivers (Taylor); twelve grandchildren: Charles Heath Heyl IV, Anne Heyl Kody, Eliza Turner Heyl, Alston Rivers Slay, Richard Andrew Slay, Kyle William Kennedy, Madeleine Elise Kennedy, Charlotte Elizabeth Lazarus, Moultrie Rutledge Rivers Williams, Caroline Pinckney Williams, William Alexander Rivers and Abigail West Rivers; sister-in-law, Carroll W. Rivers; three great-grandchildren; and numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother, George Lamb Buist Rivers, Jr.

Memorials may be made to St. Andrews Church of Mount Pleasant, 440 Whilden Street, Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464 or The Center for Birds of Prey – Avian Conservation Center, 4719 North Hwy 17, Awendaw, SC 29429.

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