March 7, 1925-Sept. 7, 2022
Palm Springs, California
Owen Calvin Peck was born at home in Kansas City, Kansas on March 7, 1925 and passed away peacefully in Palm Springs, California on September 7, 2022. Owen was the second youngest of six children. As a boy Owen was talented athletically and in demand for races and teams of all sorts. After graduating from Wyandotte High School in Kansas City he went on to attend the University of Kansas from 1944 to 1947. Owen played basketball at KU for the legendary coach Phog Allen, became a star player making the all-conference team thus developing a lifelong love of the sport.
Owen earned his medical degree from the University of Kansas Medical School in 1951. As a doctor, the Navy accepted him during the Korean War. While in the Navy Owen interned at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. Owen spent three years in the Navy, training as a radiological, bacteriological and chemical warfare officer. After being stationed in Nevada, Oregon, and Hawaii, Owen was discharged from the Navy in 1954. Owen was then accepted as a fellow-in-training in internal medicine at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. For the rest of his life Owen held a deep admiration for the institution, people, and reputation of the Mayo Clinic.
In 1958 Owen joined the Palo Alto, California Medical Clinic as an internist, and gastroenterologist. In 1965 Owen was elected the Chief of Medicine of the Palo Alto Staff of the Stanford Hospital. In 1970, he was appointed chief of gastroenterology of the Palo Alto Medical Clinic. In 1972 Owen accepted the position of Dean of Students and Professor of Medicine at the newly formed University of Nevada School of Medicine in Reno, Nevada. Owen was most proud of his work on the transition of the Medical School from a two-year institution to a four-year program and the establishment of the University of Nevada Student Health program. In 2001 Owen was honored twice, once with the Medical School Dean’s Award and again with the University of Nevada’s President’s Medal. Owen continued to work well into his seventies concentrating on research focused on ulcerative colitis and cancer of the colon, making several trips to Columbia, South America to study the cotton-top tamarin monkey.
Owen and his wife Marie retired to Palm Springs, California where they enjoyed travel, his newfound sports bocce ball and lawn bowling, and their wonderful home.
Owen is survived by his children Scott Peck, Melanie Peck, Doug Peck, John Peck, their families, and grandchildren Susan Peck, Sarah Peck, Robert Peck, Ellen Peck, Ryen Peck, Colin Peck, Mariana Supersano, Angela Robbins, Christopher Peck, Michael Peck, Brian Peck, and seven great-grandchildren, his wife Marie and her children Susan, Paula, Eric, Chris, and Carmen their families and grandchildren Geoffrey Katz and Malcolm Pence.
Owen was preceded in death by his parents Robert Peck and Mary Willie Allen, his siblings Robert Peck, Willie “T” Rowland, Mary Sage, Eugene Peck, Lyle Peck, and his first wife Muralyn Hartz.
Many thanks and appreciation to Jonie Gatus and her staff for the exceptional care Owen received throughout his final years.