517th Parachute Regimental Combat Team
John McLean Wilson, MD
June 3, 1917 - June 14, 2006
Dr. Wilson was born on June 3, 1917, in Darlington, one of six children of Bertha Lesesne Briggs Wilson and Thomas Evans Wilson. He was a practicing physician in Darlington for 53 years. He was a life long member of St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, a championship golfer, avid fisherman, hunter and Master Gardener.
Dr. Wilson, with Amelia Talbert Wilson, his late wife of over 50 years, was the founder of Wilson Clinic and Hospital in 1947, which grew over the next half century into the family owned business, Wilson Senior Care, Inc., the parent company of Oakhaven Nursing Home, Medford Place Nursing Home, Morrell Memorial Nursing Center, and Med Center Pharmacy. He remained President and Chairman of the Board of Wilson Senior Care, Inc., until his death. His devotion to his patients and employees was a guiding presence throughout his distinguished career.
He earned a Bachelors Degree from the Citadel and a Doctor of Medicine Degree from the Duke University School of Medicine. He served The United States as a Captain in the US Army Medical Corps during World War II as a Battalion Surgeon and paratrooper in the 517th Airborne Infantry Regiment of the 82nd Airborne Division. He jumped behind enemy combat lines in Germany and France as part of a team which established a field hospital. He also served with the 13th and 101st Airborne Divisions in the European Theater. His last military assignment was at the Regional Hospital in Fort Bragg, NC, as Chief of the Contagious Disease Section.
Dr. Wilson’s many achievements and awards include Eagle Scout, the South Carolina Order of the Palmetto, Darlington’s Citizen of the Year, the Chamber of Commerce Professional of the Year, and recipient of the Chamber’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He served as a member of Darlington City Council, Mayor pro tem, member and past president of St. David’s Society, member and past president of Darlington Country Club, and was on the vestry of his church for many years.
He is survived by his wife, Betty Gordon Wilson; one daughter, Amelia Wilson Craver (Joseph) of Atlanta, GA; three sons, John Lesesne Wilson (Lynne) of Mt. Pleasant, SC, Thomas Gray Wilson, MD, (Perry) of Darlington, and Andrew Moore Wilson (Jennifer) of Columbia; one sister, Mrs. Robert Moorman, III, of Columbia, nine grand children, and one great grandchild.