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Dr. Paul DeCamp, former LTA President dies at 97. - Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Dr. Paul DeCamp

This past Sunday, we lost a dear friend, Dr. Paul DeCamp, a surgeon who achieved spo much in the operating room and also on the tennis court, died at age 97.

Born in 1915 in Korea, where his parents were missionaries.

Dr. DeCamp earned an undergraduate degree at Wheaton College and a medical degree at the University of Pennsylvania. After an internship and residencies in Texas, he came to New Orleans in 1944 for a surgery fellowship at Tulane University School of Medicine. He had a second fellowship a year later at Ochsner, and he joined the surgery staff in 1946.

He was a surgeon for almost 40 years at Ochsner Clinic and helped to be a part of the first successful kidney transplants on an adult and on a child.
Except for time at Charity Hospital and Tulane, as well as two years in the Army in the 1950s, Dr. DeCamp was at Ochsner until he retired in 1985.

For many years, he was the assistant chief of surgery, first under Dr. Alton Ochsner, one of the institution’s founders and its namesake, and then under his son Dr. John Ochsner.

Dr. DeCamp also was on the Alton Ochsner Medical Foundation board of trustees and its executive committee.

His loved playing tennis and competed well into his 80s, ranked eighth in the nation among men 80-85 years old and also third among double players.

Whenever Dr. DeCamp advanced from one age group to the next on the senior circuit, "everybody in that age bracket (that he had just left) would breathe a sigh of relief because they didn’t have to play him anymore,” Riddick said.

He was the LTA President from 1983 until 1984 while also retaining his membership in the New Orleans Lawn Tennis Club until last year, 61 years after he joined. At that time, he was the club’s oldest member.

"He was nurtured on the importance of reaching out to people in need,” said the Rev. Don Frampton, senior pastor at St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, where Dr. DeCamp was a longtime member.

Survivors include four sons, Paul DeCamp Jr. of Augusta, Ga., John DeCamp, Richard DeCamp of Centennial, Colo., and Clifford DeCamp of Charlotte, N.C.; a daughter, Marie DeCamp Dean of Dallas; and five grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held Aug. 24 at 3 p.m. at St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, 1545 State St. Visitation in the sanctuary will begin at 2 p.m. Burial will be private.

Lake Lawn Metairie Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements
"He was a very energetic, driven person,” said Dr. Frank Riddick, a longtime Ochsner colleague and friend. "You knew when you were working with Paul that you had better know what you were doing and be prepared to dig in and work hard.”


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