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May-03-2015 03:15printcomments

Dr. Phil Leveque, WWII Hero and Pot Doc Has Died

Doc Leveque was the greatest part of the Greatest Generation.

Bonnie King and Dr. Phil Leveque
Bonnie King and Dr. Phil Leveque on his birthday in 2014.
Photo: Salem-News.com

(SALEM, Ore.) - It is with great sadness that I share this news. Our doctor, friend, teacher, and mentor 92-year old Phil Leveque passed away Saturday afternoon, peacefully with his family aside him.

His great niece described him as “The Most Awesome, Intelligent, Funny, Open-minded, Game Changing, Great Uncle, Dr. Phil Leveque”, and that about covers it. He did change the game.

Many of you will know that he had been suffering from the effects of cancer, and ongoing pain from a broken hip and leg that were repaired well over a year ago. His passing was not unexpected as he has been unwell for a number of months, and the effects of cancer took its final toll.

Though difficult, it is a great relief to all that love him that he is finally free of pain. He was preceded in death by his wife Eve in 2004 and daughter Rochelle in 2007.

Phil Leveque was a soldier to the end. As a young man, he served as a combat infantryman in World War Two, a forward scout.

"I walked most of the way under fire from Luxembourg almost to Dresden. Under fire on a daily basis. I spent more time on the point than anybody else in my battalion and more time on the observation post than anybody except my own six guys. I don’t have any idea how I got out of that alive,” he said.

After insistence from his wife, Eve, Dr. Leveque began writing about his experiences of war about 20 years after the fact, when PTSD was apparent as a factor in his life. They had a family of five children, and the kids had questions of their own.

In his memoir1 "Gen. Patton’s Dogface Soldier" he expresses what couldn’t be spoken about. It helped him move through the nightmares, and he began speaking to groups and helping others. He dealt with PTSD for almost 70 years, so he could relate.

He told the story many times about a call he got from high-ranking Catholic priest. The priest told him, "Somebody just gave me your book. I’m a combat infantryman myself. And you got it right."

He was a Doctor of Osteopathy with a PhD in Pharmacology and Toxicology, and spent a great amount of his career as a professor at the medical-school level, moving the entire Leveque clan to “the far reaches of the earth”. One adventure after another.

Phil Leveque did not ever let any grass grow under his feet. If he wasn’t working on something, he wasn’t awake. He was the quintessential “good doctor”, helping, healing and saving innumerable fellow human beings as a rule.

He had a great sense of humor and he loved to dance wherever music was playing, but he had his serious side. Dr. Leveque was a private individual. The brilliant doctor was a consummate scientist. He researched and studied with intensity every subject that he took on, and he studied Cannabis/Marijuana for over 50 years.

He was brave. He never minded being the spokesman for the causes he believed in. Cannabis/Marijuana became one of those causes.

He became a prominent supporter of Oregon’s 1998 medical marijuana initiative, helping legalize the use of marijuana as medicine. He fought for patients’ rights his entire career, and it was that very battle that stole his career from him. He never gave up though, and he “never let the bastards get him down.”

I was blessed to have him come into my life in 2003, first as a doctor and then as a business associate, and friend. He began writing for Salem-News.com in 2007, and he soon became an integral part of our family.

We enjoyed many memorable days with Doc; reading aloud at his direction, singing along to his favorite French songs, and succumbing to his infectious passion for life with his boisterous laugh as the soundtrack. We traveled up the Snake River on a jet boat with him, walked through WWII Battery Russel at Fort Stevens, and appeared at many a court hearing on behalf of citizens he believed in.

He is still the “Pot Doc” to thousands of patients who know and love him, including over a thousand Veterans. Always, he would lay down his life for any of them, and any of us. He gave his all.

Dr. Phillip E. Leveque, the war is over. You have won.

Rest in Peace, dear friend. You will be greatly missed.

Phillip Edwin Leveque
February 22, 1923
to May 2, 2015
~Rest in Peace~

Plan/date for the Celebration of Life is yet to be determined.

1The book is presently being re-edited and the profits from future sales will be donated to Wounded Warriors, to help those suffering from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), as he directed.

ALSO read: Dr Phil Leveque: The Coolest 90-Year Old on Planet Earth (2013)

_________________________________________




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M. Dennis Paul. PhD May 13, 2015 8:53 am (Pacific time)

Oregon , the US and the world have lost a truly great human being. How blessed to have had his presence, knowledge and wisdom all these years. My heart goes out to his family and close friends and I wish the good doc a peaceful journey.


Jay_Bergstrom May 4, 2015 11:38 am (Pacific time)

RIP Doc. Thank you for your passion in the cannabis war. And... Thank you for saving the world in WWII.


_Brian_Kelly_ May 3, 2015 8:43 pm (Pacific time)

When a loved one is in pain, wasting away unable to eat, and needs this marvelous herb in order to increase their appetite, reduce the overwhelming pain, and live as as healthy and happily as they can with the time they have left, let's have the compassion to allow them to have it.

Stop treating Medical Marijuana Patients like second rate citizens and common criminals by forcing them to the dangerous black market for their medicine.

Risking incarceration to obtain the medicine you need is no way to be forced to live.

Support Medical Marijuana Now!

"[A] federal policy that prohibits physicians from alleviating suffering by prescribing marijuana for seriously ill patients is misguided, heavy-handed, and inhumane." — Dr. Jerome Kassirer, "Federal Foolishness and Marijuana," editorial, New England Journal of Medicine, January 30, 1997

"[The AAFP accepts the use of medical marijuana] under medical supervision and control for specific medical indications." — American Academy of Family Physicians, 1989, reaffirmed in 2001

"[We] recommend … allow[ing] [marijuana] prescription where medically appropriate." — National Association for Public Health Policy, November 15, 1998

"Therefore be it resolved that the American Nurses Association will: — Support the right of patients to have safe access to therapeutic marijuana/cannabis under appropriate prescriber supervision." — American Nurses Association, resolution, 2003

"The National Nurses Society on Addictions urges the federal government to remove marijuana from the Schedule I category immediately, and make it available for physicians to prescribe. NNSA urges the American Nurses' Association and other health care professional organizations to support patient access to this medicine." — National Nurses Society on Addictions, May 1, 1995

"[M]arijuana has an extremely wide acute margin of safety for use under medical supervision and cannot cause lethal reactions … [G]reater harm is caused by the legal consequences of its prohibition than possible risks of medicinal use." — American Public Health Association, Resolution #9513, "Access to Therapeutic Marijuana/Cannabis," 1995

"When appropriately prescribed and monitored, marijuana/cannabis can provide immeasurable benefits for the health and well-being of our patients … We support state and federal legislation not only to remove criminal penalties associated with medical marijuana, but further to exclude marijuana/cannabis from classification as a Schedule I drug." — American Academy of HIV Medicine, letter to New York Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, November 11, 2003


G 2/3 May 3, 2015 6:15 pm (Pacific time)

not many good men around.,now one less. 4/20 Doc!!

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©2017 Salem-News.com. All opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Salem-News.com.


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