Dr. Thomas R. Byrd
September 15, 1935-October 10, 2017
Los Osos, CA- Dr. Thomas R. Byrd, 82, (Capt. US Navy, retired) of Los Osos, California passed away on Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at Mission View Health Center Is San Luis Obispo, CA.
He was born on September 15, 1935 to the late Clyde and Mae Sowell Byrd Roberts. He was a graduate of Mt. Pisgah High School, Clemson University, and the Medical University of South Carolina. He received a Master of Public Health from Harvard University.
Capt. Byrd began his Navy career at the Naval Hospital. in Charleston, SC, and subsequently had tours of duty in Washington D.C.; Boston, Massachusetts; Da Nang, Republic of Vietnam; Naples, Itlay: San Diego, California; and Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. His duties in preventative medicine carried him as far east as Bahrain, as far west as Sri Lanka, as far south as Antarctica, and as far north Point Barrow, Alaska. Captain Byrd received numerous decorations, including the Navy Commendation medal, the Combat Action Ribbon, the National Defense Service Medal, two Vietnam Campaign Medals, three Humanitarian Service Medals, the republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross, and the Republic of Vietnam Meritorious Unit Citation Civil Action Medal.
After his retirement from the US Navy, Byrd received his Juris Doctor from the College of Law at Western State University, San Diego, California. He practiced law in Hanford, California until his retirement. He served on the board of Directors for the Kings County Rehabilitation Center. He also received commendations from the United State Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management for his service to the Southern Sierra Archaeological Society painted Rock Monitoring Program.
He enjoyed hiking major trials in the United States, Malaysia, New Zealand, and Nepal. Other interests included horticulture and rock art.
Dr. Byrd is survived by his half-brother, Robert Roberts (Celia) of Kershaw, SC and nieces Amy (Stephen) Graves of Elgin, SC; Lisa Welborn of Leesville, SC; and Laura (Keith) Atkinson, of Lexington, SC' Great nephews Matt Welborn, Andrew Welborn, Evan Graves, and Johnathan Atkinson. Great nieces included Kayla and Hannah Atkinson. He is survived by one aunt Bobbie (Lee) Catoe of Columbia, SC. He was preceded in death by a half-brother Vernon Roberts. Dr. Byrd faithfully served the Lord until his health no longer allowed him to do so. A private burial was held December 26, 2017 at Buffalo Baptist Church, Kershaw, SC.