Dr. Joe Thomas (J.T.) Downard, age 85, of Selma, passed away Saturday, January 26, 2013.
Dr. Downard was a graduate of the University of Mississippi and the University of Mississippi Medical School. He practiced as a General Practitioner in Laurel, MS for 6 years. During that period, he and his partner, Dr. James Waites, were responsible for vaccinating all of Jones County, MS for the polio virus.
Additionally, he went on for further education and graduated from the University of Tennessee at Memphis in Radiology. Dr. Downard practiced radiology for 25 years at New Vaughn Hospital in Selma, AL. During his medical career in Selma, he served as president of the Southern Radiology Society. Dr. Downard retired in 1990. He enjoyed much of his retirement playing golf and gardening.
He is a veteran of the United States Navy where he served as a medic.
A graveside service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, January 28, 2013 at New Live Oak Cemetery with Dr. Jerry Light officiating and Lawrence Brown-Service Funeral Home directing.
Dr. Downard was preceded in death by his parents: Joseph Willard and Wilma Lee Priscock Downard of Florence, MS; and grandson: Zachary Thomas Downard of Birmingham, AL.
He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Nora Grace Watkins Downard and sons, Joe Thomas Downard, Jr. (Jane) of Brandon, MS; James Timothy Downard (Crystal) and daughter, Kelly Anne Downard Davis (Lee) of Birmingham, AL; and grandchildren: Amber Grace Downard Gray (Jason), Kelsey Ann Lyon, Alyssa Elise Allen, PFC Jacob Timothy Downard USMC, Olivia Rose Downard, and Samuel Joseph Downard.
He is also survived by his sisters: Mary Alice Downard Hydrick and Grace Ella Downard Peeples and brother, Willard Edward Downard, all of Florence, MS.
The family request that all memorials be made to the Selma/Dallas County Library or First Baptist Church of Selma.
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