Dr. Edward Reilly Wallace, “Ed”, passed away quietly in his early sleep on Saturday August 7, at the age of 91 in Santa Barbara, California, his home for the last 21 years of his life.
Ed was born on a dark snowy night at the winter solstice on December 21, 1929, in Niagara Falls, New York, the first son of a large second-generation Irish family. Her childhood memories included growing up with her siblings, playing football in high school and college, visiting summertime eating “frisbee pies” and drinking Coca-Cola with her grandfather Wallace in Derby, Connecticut, and to work on the railroad to earn money for University.
As a teenager, Ed stumbled across “A Doctor of the Old School” by Ian Maclaren, which sparked in his heart a passion to become a country doctor. After graduating from his father’s Alma Mater Niagara University, he attended Georgetown University School of Medicine in 1954. After graduation, he went to California for an internship at the University of Medicine. University of California Davis from 1954 to 1955. Before completing his education, he enlisted in the Marines serving in Hawaii for the 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Medical Company from 1955 to 1957, then returned to the University of California Davis in 1957 – 1958 to complete his residency in general medicine.
Upon completion of his education and training, he traveled California’s Pacific Coast Highway in search of a small town to begin his practice and raise his family, choosing the small town of Lompoc, California, near the Vandenburg Air Force Base (nÃ©e Camp Cook).
At Lompoc, Ed was a beloved town doctor who treated all of his patients with respect, regardless of social status, immigration status, or race. He even made “house calls” in the middle of the night with his doctor’s bag, which was always neatly stowed behind the driver’s seat of his trusty VW Bug for any potential emergency or first aid. Ed has been a strong advocate for public health care his entire life.
Ed embraced his life in Lompoc and enjoyed standing on the sidelines of the Lompoc Braves’ weekly soccer games as the team’s medic. He attended local Rotary club meetings, was a founding partner of the Valley Medical Group, and served on the board of directors of the Lompoc District Hospital. During his years of practice, he gave birth to several generations of Lompoc townspeople and was often arrested on the streets in the decades after starting his practice, to be remembered by a cheerful teenager that he was the doctor who gave birth to her, her brother and her mother!
He was a voracious reader of detective stories, philosophy, history, and ancient civilizations, especially when it came to fighting wars and winning (or sometimes, God forbid, losing) battles. This lifelong love for learning was easily passed on from him to his children.
Ed has had a competitive streak which, despite his graceful demeanor off the field, has seen him give 100% in any game so his opponent can feel the agony of defeat. Ed played contact basketball with his teenage son Kevin, baseball, racquetball, tennis, golf, table tennis and, in his later years, a game of pickleball and billiards in Valle Verde Santa. Barbara Senior Living Community. In the last months of his life, he still enjoyed the thrill of victory playing a wild “Oh Hell” card game with his stepson Karl and stepdaughter Irene, where his competitive spirit continued to shine.
Listening almost exclusively to classical music and enjoying a glass of fresh lemonade, an early evening gin and tonic or scotch (“neat”), Ed and his wife, Pat, have been gracious hosts to family and friends. friends throughout his later years. He loved fluffy slippers, Kellogg’s Raisin Bran, feeding birds, and heavy cotton over shirts when he was just hanging out home. But he was most proud of having climbed the Karakoram mountain range, without fluffy slippers, in Nepal at the age of 49. This grueling journey followed a life of trekking and camping in the mountains and wilderness of America with his family. To this day, her children enjoy the outdoors and “getting away from it all” just as much as their father.
Ed is predeceased by his parents Edward Thomas Wallace and Helen (Reilly) Wallace and his brother Thomas Wallace. He is survived by his siblings Helen aka “Ginger” (Wallace) Alletto, Abigail (Wallace) Groves, Kathleen (Wallace) Strammer, Terrence aka “Terry” Wallace and Christopher Wallace.
Ed is survived by his beloved wife of 41 years, Pat, an amateur architect who has always created a beautiful and serene home wherever they live, his son Kevin Wallace, former firefighter and fire chief of Montecito, his daughter Shauna (Wallace) Lotz, a radiation oncology nurse with a flair for color and design, her daughter Terri Wallace, environmental consultant, artist and photographer, her stepson Karl Weiss, teacher and writer, her daughter-in-law Frieda (Weiss) White, occupational therapist, and her stepdaughter Karen (Weiss) Miller, business owner, along with all her step grandchildren, Erin Wallace, Shane Wallace, Aaron Lotz, Alexandra aka “Ally” Lotz, Alanna White , Marinda White, Brooke Miller, Andrew Miller, Benjamin Garnett, Colin Garnett and great-grandchildren Emma Hartsough and Owen Hartsough.
A deep love of hiking and the outdoors, hard work, athletics and reading; these are the characteristics passed on to her children, her stepchildren and their children. There is no greater memory than the reflection of a parent’s passions and behaviors. Died, but never far.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Ed’s memory to the nonprofit buildOn, dedicated to breaking the cycle of poverty and illiteracy through service and education, at the address https://www.buildon.org/get-involved/donate.