Ranger Exes Memorial - RHS Class of 1923

Cyril Black DR. CYRIL V. BLACK, M.D., 94, was born Nov. 10, 1905, at Neola, KS, the son of Clarence & Alta L. VanLenh Black. He died May 11, 2000, at his home in Pratt, KS. A pioneer in every sense of the word, he moved, at the age of 3, with his family to Oklahoma in a covered wagon. His mother was killed by lightning when he was 16. His father died about five years later. Cyril graduated from Ranger High School in 1923 at Ranger, TX. He somehow managed to put his sister through teachersí college & support himself through medical school working in Texas oilfields and as a night manager at a hospital. He graduated from Texas A&M College in 1928 and the University of Texas Medical School, Galveston, in 1931. In July of 1931, he married Margaret Koppers in Humboldt, KS. She died in 1997. He began his medical practice in Wichita and at the age of 25 was hired to help start Sedgwick County Hospital on West Douglas. In 1935, he moved to Pratt, where he practiced medicine for more than 50 years, retiring in 1986. Survivors include three sons, John V. "Jack" of Pratt, James F. "Jim" of Marshalltown, IA, and William L. "Bill", Colorado Springs, CO, a daughter, Margaret Ellen Howell, Sacramento, CA. And grand- children and great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by a sister, Cecile Tolle (RHS-1924). During WWII, Black was only one of four doctors left in Pratt, caring for approximately 8,000 servicemen stationed at the Pratt Air Base and their dependents, in addition to the local Pratt population. By the time he retired, he had delivered more than 4,700 babies, once delivering a baby for a member of the infamous Bonnie & Clyde gang at Kellerís Cabin Camp. His many contributions to his community & area in Boy Scouting, birth control, Jaycees, and membership on numerous medical and civic boards as well as political groups and service clubs & medical groups is very noteworthy. He received citations from both Presidents Roosevelt and Truman for civil service during WWII. He was a fellow in both the International College of Surgeons and the American College of Surgeons and went on a lecture tour around the world with the International College of Surgeons, lecturing on birth control. One lecture in Thailand was televised. He was a physician and surgeon, specializing in OB/GYN. His son, John Black of Pratt, Kansas, said that he often talked of his days in Ranger, TX, in the oil boom days. He had a copy of "Roaring Ranger" that he frequently referred to and annotated with personal experiences.