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Dr. Bernard R. Cahill

July 13, 1929 September 6, 2008
Dr. Bernard R. Cahill
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Obituary for Dr. Bernard R. Cahill

PEORIA-Dr. Bernard R. Cahill, 79, of Peoria, passed away at 11:05 a.m. on Saturday, September 6, 2008 at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center. Dr. Cahill was born on July 13, 1929 in Bradford to Code and Elizabeth Meehan Cahill. He married Sandra Roth on March 7, 1986 in Peoria. She survives. He is also survived by three daughters, Caroline Shepherd of Florida, Elizabeth “Ellie” Laita of California and Maria Besler of East Peoria; one son, Bernard Cahill, Jr. of California; five grandchildren; his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Lester and Sara Roth; one brother, James Cahill of California; and many nieces and nephews including, Stacy Wehnes, Matthew Wehnes and Wade Kirkpatrick. He was preceded in death by one sister. Dr. Cahill was a member of the United States Marine Corps, serving his country in the Korean War from 1950-1954 as a ground officer. After an honorable discharge from the Marines, Dr. Cahill received a Bachelor of Science degree and his Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of Illinois. He completed his residency in Orthopaedic Surgery at Saint Francis Hospital in Peoria and at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Cahill was a visionary in the orthopaedic subspecialty of sports medicine. He founded the Great Plains Sports Medicine Foundation, the oldest sports medicine foundation in the United States. He was a founding member of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, the American Society of Biomechanics, the Cruciate Society, as well as the International Society of the Knee. Dr. Cahill held memberships in the American College of Surgeons, The American College of Sports Medicine, the Clinical Orthopaedic Society, and the Arthroscopy Association of North America. In addition to his clinical and academic expertise, Dr. Cahill held Editorial Board and Board of Trustee positions on the Foundation for Sports Medicine Education and Research, the Journal of the Western Pacific Orthopaedic Association, the Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery, and the American Journal of Sports Medicine. A true pioneer in sports medicine, Dr. Cahill served in various capacities and in many roles all over the world. Dr. Cahill authored over 40 scientific publications and presented over 200 lectures locally, regionally, and nationally. Dr. Cahill shared his research and clinical contributions internationally as well, providing lectures in Ireland, Japan, China, Thailand, and the Philippines. He instituted the American Orthopaedic Society of Sports Medicine Asian Traveling Fellowship. Dr. Cahill served on the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and chaired a Sports Medicine Symposium on Children and Adolescents in Competitive Sports at the White House during the Reagan Administration. He was the team physician at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. He served as President of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, received the society’s Robert E. Leach Mr. Sports Medicine Award in 1984, and was elected into the Society’s Hall of Fame in 2004. He was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church. A Funeral Mass celebrating Dr. Cahill’s life will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, September 12, 2008 at Saint Thomas Catholic Church, 904 E. Lake Avenue in Peoria Heights with Monsignor William Watson. Visitation will be from 4-8 p.m. on Thursday, September 11, 2008 at the church. Additional visitation will be one hour before the mass at the church. Graveside services will be at 3 p.m. on Friday at St. John’s Cemetery in Bradford. Wright & Salmon Mortuary is in charge of arrangements. Memorial contributions may be made to Orthopaedic Research and Funding, OSF Saint Francis Medical Center, Salvation Army or Charity of the Donor’s Choice. Tributes and condolences may be submitted to


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