William David Varner ’73

Dr. William David Varner, Junior, MD, 70, of Columbus, Georgia died on January 20, 2022 peacefully alongside his wife and five daughters. Funeral services will be held Tuesday, January 25, 2022 at 2:30PM at St. Paul United Methodist Church. Visitation prior to the service at St. Paul at 1:00PM.

David was born on July 24, 1951 in Franklin, Virginia, the son of Dr. William David Varner, Senior and Mrs. Ruth Hungerford Varner. He graduated from Hardaway High School, went to Davidson College for undergraduate school where he was a Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and received his Doctor of Medicine from Medical College of Georgia. David then completed his internship at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, and his residency at the University of Texas and Hermann Hospital, Houston Texas.

After completing his surgical training in 1985, David returned to his hometown to fulfill his life’s ambition by joining a passionate and exceptional group of surgeons to form Columbus Surgical Associates, made up of his dear friends Chuck Scarborough, MD, the late Luther Wolff, MD and the late William Wolff, MD. A highly respected general surgeon, David poured his heart and soul into his practice and patients.

His passion for helping people extended into his community where he served on various boards including Boy’s and Girl’s Club, Springer Opera House, Columbus Symphony, LOCHAWABA, Leadership Georgia, Chattahoochee Valley Community Foundation, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper, The Columbus Ballet, Synovus, St. Paul United Methodist Church, and St. Francis Hospital. He is past president of both the Muscogee County Medical Society and The Columbus Ballet Board of Trustees.

When a tragic accident in 2000 left him quadriplegic and unable to practice surgery, David used his vast medical knowledge consulting for St. Francis Hospital and AFLAC. He also filled his time with efforts to better this community through philanthropy. Particularly dear to his heart was Easter Seals of West Georgia where he served as chairman of a 6-year long capital campaign.

While David will be remembered for the work he did in his beloved community, according to him, his greatest source of pride was his family. David was happiest when surrounded by his wife, their five daughters, his five sons-in-law, and his 12 grandchildren. He is survived by his wife, Mary Robinson Varner, his daughters, Helen Manderson (Coate), Mary Lovett Beck (Jeff), Caroline Fields (Brandon), Sally Watkins (Tommy), and Anna Garcia (Nick) and his grandchildren: Sally, Wynne, Lovett, Gardner, Julianna, Bennett, Mims, Eliza Chance, Mary Helen, Eli, David, and Will, as well as his siblings Ann Viamonte (Luis), Caroline Coburn (Charles), John Varner (Kathy) and Rob Varner (Sista) and a host of nieces and nephews.

The family is grateful to his caregiver, Matthew Tyner, for the loving, compassionate care that he gave him.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations may be made to Easter Seals West Georgia, 2515 Double Churches Rd, Columbus, Georgia 31909 and St. Paul United Methodist Church, 2101 Wildwood Avenue, Columbus, Georgia 31906.

To sign the online guest registry, please visit www.shcolumbus.com.