October 10, 1933 ~ November 13, 2018
Dr. Robert Dempsey Milledge, “Bob” to family, friends, and colleagues, passed away on November 13, 2018 at the age of 85. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Deanna Swindle Milledge (Dee), his children Robert and John Milledge of Birmingham AL, and Lisa Milledge and Lucy Katz of Atlanta GA, his brother Lewis DeBlois (Brother) Milledge of Coral Gables, FL, seven grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren, as well as his fondly held in-laws and cats. He was born on October 10, 1933 to Lewis DeBlois and Lucile Dempsey Milledge of Coral Gables, FL. He was a man of science and faith, attending Emory University and Emory School of Medicine (1957), and a perpetual student of varied interests: from astronomy and natural history to religious studies, Renaissance art, and Italian language. He was a proper bibliophile, an incessant reader across genres and fields, of history, politics, theology, of high and low fiction (with special heart for his own generation of writers, Updike favored among them), poetry, and of “how-to” manuals of just about every practical concern: from fixing a dishwasher to navigating the oceans. A wryly funny and committed contrarian, he became a doctor out of a family of lawyers, a fan of Trollope over Dickens, a cheekily sparring viewpoint to the local paper’s editorial page, and a trusty spokesperson for traditions and institutions, lest they be forgotten, misremembered, or meddled with. He was also an inquiring and adventurous traveler (encouraged and accompanied by Dee), a capable electronics tinkerer, a ham radio builder and operator, and an avid collector of tools, machines, clocks, and stray cats. Among other leisure pursuits he was a tentative sailor. After retirement he was an inveterate apprentice of woodworking and boat making, whose yearly idyll was a trip to the Wooden Boat School in Brooklin, Maine, where he proudly joined the all-volunteer alumni work crews that opened the summer session, with a week or two of boat-building courses following. Bob is remembered as an eager trombone player, an aficionado of Mozart (especially the Magic Flute) and the poems of A.E. Housman and Tennyson, and as an ever-ready spout of a few cherished, good-naturedly sacrilegious Italian exclamations. At work, he was treasured as a conduit for a seemingly oceanic current of good to bad jokes that coursed through the operating rooms of his medical career as an interventional radiologist, a career which began in Little Rock, passed through Lexington, KY, involuntarily detoured during the Vietnam War to Walter Reed Hospital in D.C., and ended at Atlanta’s Crawford Long Hospital. He will be sorely missed and lovingly remembered. A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held on January 5, 2019 at 2 p.m. at Saint Gabriel’s Episcopal Church in Oakwood, GA.