Dr. Lenore, as she was affectionately called by her friends and patients died Monday, August 14, 2000 following emergency surgery.
Lenore was born December 11, 1917 in Boston, Massachusetts to Dr. Paul S. and Ethel B. Richards,
where her father was attending Harvard Medical School. The family moved to Bingham Canyon, Utah when she was five years old. Too young for school, her favorite haunts were the mortuary next door and the corridors of her father's hospital across the street. From that background grew an ardent love of medicine.
She was educated in the local Bingham schools. Here the close association of so many ethnic groups and classes of people led to the broadest education an adolescent could have. Next came the University of Utah, then her MD from Temple University Medical School in 1943. She interned at Cincinnati General Hospital where she was accepted as the first woman in the surgical school program. After four years at Cincinnati, she was named chief resident.
In 1950, Dr. Lenore returned to Salt Lake City to begin private practice, where she joined and assisted her father in founding the Richards Memorial Medical Center. She continued her practice there until her retirement in 1983. There was never any question that she would follow her father into medicine (she is a fourth generation doctor). It also never crossed her mind that being a woman might pose an obstacle to her ambition. "I always believed you could be anything that you wanted to be," while admitting that it took a "lot of determination" to achieve her goal. Over the next 40 years, she served as chairman and vice president of the Richards Memorial Medical Foundation, helping fund medical programs and scholarships for future doctors.
After retirement, she began an active participation with the Bingham High School Alumni Association where she served on the Board of Trustees. Throughout her career she was a loyal supporter of the Bingham High School basketball team and for several years was the team doctor. Retirement years also brought her an opportunity to continue her lifelong passion for travel and hand craft activities. She was on the Board of Trustees of the Pioneer Craft House.
Dr. Lenore is survived by five nieces and nephews, Kathie B. (Jim) Jones of Tualatin, Oregon; Susan B. (Dennis) Van Brocklin of Walnut Creek, California; Clark G. (Holley) Richards of Salt Lake City; Paul R. Baker of Rainier, Oregon; and A. Brad (Jill) Baker of Danville, California. She was absolutely devoted to them, as they were to her.
Preceded in death by a sister Ethel Richards Baker in 1989, a brother Paul S. Richards Jr. in 1968 and by a niece Paula Jeane Richards in 1976.
Memorial Services will be held August 26, 2000 at 11 a.m. at Mountain View First LDS Ward Chapel, 1400 S. 1900 E., where friends and family of Dr. Lenore may gather from 9:30 a.m. Contributions to Bingham High School Alumni Association, 2160 W. 10400 S., South Jordan, Utah 84095, are suggested by the family.