Robert Royce MD
Robert Killian Royce, M.D.
Dr. Robert Royce, MD passed away peacefully at his home in Ladue at age 101, attended by the love of his family, on May 15, 2018. Born in Mississippi, he received his BS from the University of Mississippi before earning his MD at Washington University School of Medicine. He joined the army as a surgeon in August of 1943, and served with the 134th battalion at D Day and during the Battle of the Bulge. He assisted in liberating a concentration camp. After the war, he joined the faculty of the Washington University School of Medicine in the Division of Urology, and built a successful private urology practice. He met his future wife, Virginia Stites, while she was a nurse assisting him in the operating room. During his career at WUSM, Dr. Royce was clinical professor of genitourinary surgery and associate professor of surgery in the division of urologic surgery. Dr. Royce was on the Washington university school of medicine faculty for 45 years. He was in charge of the urologic residency training program for 15 years and named acting head of the division of urologic surgery from 1973-75. He also consulted at the Veterans Administration Hospital and St. Louis Regional Hospital. In 1997 he was recognized with the WUSM Alumni Faculty Award and the Justin Cordonnier Award for service to the division of urologic surgery. Teaching was one of the great joys of his career, and to honor his legacy as a beloved professor in 2010 the urology division created the Robert Killian Royce Distinguished Professorship in Urologic Surgery.
Dr. Royce was board certified in urology, a member of Alpha Omega Alpha honorary medical society, the American Medical Association, the American Urological Association, the Missouri State Medical Association, the St. Louis Medical Society, the St. Louis Urological Society and was a fellow of the American College of Surgeons.
After his retirement in 1994, he used his free time to become an avid golfer and outdoorsman, joining the Old Warson Country Club and spending weekends at his country home in the Ozarks. His active social life included bowling, bridge, poker, and dining with his many friends at Old Warson, the University Club, and the St. Louis Club.
Dr. Royce loved nature, hiking and four wheeling in the country and could recognize almost any tree by it’s bark or it’s leaf. He considered himself a naturalist, loved his rose garden and inspired those around him to respect and love nature.
Dr. Royce had a beautiful singing voice and in his youth sang in a barber shop quartet. He led many wonderful family sing -a- longs while camping. He was also a skilled violinist and played door to door during the depression.
Dr. Royce was a life long learner and loved to be challenged. He remained open-minded and true to his ethical values throughout his life.
Funeral Mass Thursday May 24, 9:30am at Ste. Genevieve du Bois Catholic Church. Interment Resurrection Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, he wished memorial donations be made to Justin Cordonnier Society at Washington University School of Medicine, Division of Urology. www.urology.wustl.edu/Giving Visitation will be from 3 – 7 pm on Wednesday, May 23, at the Bopp Chapel.