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Posted on August 31, 2016 | 11:16 a.m.

Dr. Gregory Dahlen Jr. of Santa Barbara, 1919-2016

Source: Gregory Dahlen III

Dr. Gregory Dahlen Jr.

Dr. Gregory Dahlen Jr. died of natural causes on Jan. 14, 2016, in Santa Barbara, California, at the age of 96, surrounded by his family.

Greg was born on July 23, 1919, in St. Paul, Minnesota, to Gregory and Edna Dahlen. He excelled in school, both academically and athletically, and served as president of his high school class in Bismark, North Dakota.

After graduating from the University of North Dakota, Greg enrolled at the Bowman Grey School of Medicine, Wake Forest University.

Upon graduation he joined the U.S. Navy, where he completed his surgical internship at Norfolk Naval Hospital. He then served as the medical officer on the USS Mattaponi on a tour in the Pacific theater during and immediately after World War II.  

During his time in the Navy, Greg met surgical nurse Virginia Lee Wethern – it was love at first sight, and they were married in 1949.  They began their married life together in San Francisco, California, while Greg completed his urology residency at Stanford University.

In 1957, the family moved to Santa Barbara, and Greg joined the practice of Sansum Clinic. Greg began his own practice shortly thereafter in 1959.

He was well respected and loved in the community, always making sure that no patient was denied treatment for lack of the ability to pay.   

Dr. Gregory Dahlen Jr. was a urologist in Santa Barbara

After Greg’s retirement, he traveled the world extensively, visiting all seven continents.  He was an active member in the art community, served on the board of the Santa Barbara Symphony, and also donated 2,000 hours of his time to the organization Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic. 

The Dean of the School of Medicine at the University of North Dakota summed up young pre-med Greg’s personality well in 1942 when he wrote to the Navy stating he "has a good personality, and is very modest and unassuming but not timid. He gets along well with others. So far as we know and believe, he is straightforward and reliable and is the kind physically, intellectually and morally that should be thought of as officer material.”

Accurate words indeed.

He is survived by his four children, Monica Dahlen, Gregory Dahlen III, Lisa Dahlen, and Annika Dahlen; by his granddaughter, Rebecca Reid (James); and by his great-granddaughter, Sonja Reid.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Virginia Dahlen; his brother, Graydon Dahlen; his sister, Carolyn Olson; and his companion of 20 years, Nan Burns. 

A private funeral has been held.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Santa Barbara Symphony, or the lovely people of Santa Barbara Hospice.

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