Lewis Bruce Anderson, Jr., retired physician, outstanding athlete and beloved family member, died July 7 in Billings of natural causes.
He was born April 23, 1921, in New Orleans, LA, a son of Lewis Bruce Anderson, Sr., and Harriet Semmes Anderson. While he was an infant, the family moved to New York City and later to Rye, NY, where his father was an executive in a lumber company.
He graduated from Dartmouth College before joining the U.S. Army in 1942 during World War II. With prior experience in many sports, he was trained in the Colorado Rocky Mountains as a skiing rifleman for mountain infantry. As a lieutenant, he served as a platoon leader with the 10th Mountain Division in the Italian campaign, involved in the important capture of Mount Belvedere among many European battles during 1944 and 1945.
Moved by his experience with death and injury during the war, he chose a career in medicine. He studied pre-medicine at Wesleyan University, where he met Jean Hancock Riley, a graduate of Smith College, who was his physics lab instructor. They married in 1947 and subsequently raised five children.
He studied medicine at the University of Rochester, New York, did postgraduate training at Harvard’s Boston Children’s Hospital, and spent a year at St. Mary’s Hospital in London, England before being enticed back to the Rocky Mountains in 1956 and establishing a pediatrics practice at the Billings Clinic in Billings.
In 1967 he returned to the University of Rochester to study allergy-immunology, and upon his return to Billings became the only practicing allergist in five states for his remaining medical career.
His wife Jean died in 1996, and he married Ramona Maxwell in 1999.
He was an enthusiastic patron and collector of art, was recognized as a Philanthropist of the Year by the Yellowstone Art Center, and became an accomplished painter in his own right as an adult.
An avid rock climber and skier, he was active in the Beartooth Ski Patrol and Silver Run Ski Club. He was national downhill and slalom champion in the over-60 age class of the Masters Ski Race Series, and taught generations of rock climbers and sailors at East Rosebud Lake. A lifetime of mountaineering took him atop the Grand Teton, Mt. Ranier and Granite Peak (over 20 times).
He was a strong Democrat, a lifelong supporter of Planned Parenthood, and a member of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Billings.
Fondly known as “Bud” by family members, he is remembered for his enthusiasm, competitiveness, generosity and good humor.
He was preceded in death by his parents, wife Jean, and sisters Eleanor Humphreys and Harriette Steege.
He is survived by his wife Ramona; brother, Arthur J. Anderson, of New York, NY; son Jeffrey B. Anderson (wife, Elizabeth Scanlin, and children Jessamin and Jasper), of Red Lodge, MT; daughter Cynthia R. Anderson (husband, William Mason), of White Salmon, WA; daughter Katherine S. Jones (husband, Garry, and daughter Mariah), of Lebanon, OR; son David B. Anderson, of Red Lodge, MT; and daughter Julia H. Bond (son Matthew), of St. George, VT.
Memorials may be made to the Yellowstone Art Center, Planned Parenthood, or Silver Run Ski Club.