Dr. Byron Bruce 

 

Dr. Byron Bruce was a doctor here in Opelika. As a matter of fact, when you were born he may have delivered you. He delivered thousands of babies, but lost count after about 10,000

        Dr. Bruce was born in 1886 in Plano, Texas. In 1920, he moved to Opelika and opened a practice. Dr. Bruce and his uncle started a hospital on the " corner of North 9th Street and 3rd A venue. The hospital was located behind his house and was called the Bruce Hospital. It served Lee county for thirty years. The Hospital was well equipped for its day, but nothing like your hospitals now. Isn't it amazing how much technology has changed, especially in the medical field?

        He was always ready to answer calls for medical attention, whether at a private residence or at his office and drugstore on South Railroad Avenue. His favorite companion while driving was a bulldog, named Dick. He drove an old dented car - all the dents were Dick's fault ­he was a very careless driver. Dr. Bruce on the other hand, was much more cautions with his driving habits. Being a doctor there were many times, that he was in a hurry and found it easier to park in the middle of the street - sometimes the left door was left wide open. Everyone knew how he parked and they just drove around his car.

        Dr, Bruce was a World War I veteran and an active American Legionnaire. During World War I, he offered his services again to the country and was the Selective Service Medical Officer for Lee County.

        For recreation he loved the game of tennis and played left-handed and was very skillful in the game. He, also, was a deacon and active member of the First Baptist Church of Opelika and served on the Board of Education of Lee County and was a senior member and president of the Opelika Kiwanis Club. But by far his greatest accomplishment had to have been the time he performed an appendectomy on General Dwight D. Eisenhower, who later became our thirty-forth President of the United States.