April 23, 1957 - January 1, 2016
David C. Eitrheim, M.D. completed the race of his life, crossing the finish line on January 1, 2016, at home, surrounded by family. Finishing time was 58 years 8 months 9 days. Running is life Oh, the thousands of miles! Of time spent in holy space. Oh, the joy of endless discussions on life’s issues such as medicine, faith, politics, ethics and of course running-nerd talk - new and old races, training, this or that new thing, and the importance and joy of new running shoes! Of free medical opinions, but better keep on moving. Running becomes a paradigm of life, of friendship, camaraderie, adventure, and challenge. It is Dave who showed us these things and together became the life we would share on the trail or the road in heat, wind, snow, rain, in forest and mountain, dawn and dusk, and miles of city streets. Running was Sabbath. It is for us a sacred time apart, to renew, to reflect and to share the unspoken silence of creation with only the steady rhythm of breath and footfalls. Running was therapy. It was a time to support one another in our weakness and to console each other in our failures, sealed with the absolution of unquestioned friendship. Running is destiny. Running so many miles and not really having a good reason as to why - because we can or are we just a bit crazy? Running to a destiny, which is always over the next hill, around the next corner or just living to run another day as destiny waits. But not really knowing where it will all end; only fearing that it will. So, we run into a future that is only God’s, a destiny that is sure, but such a mystery. We console ourselves with it, but the loneliness of one less set of feet on this journey will be ever present. We are so blessed to have Dave on this incredible journey. Let us run and not be weary. To run again in some great beyond, running in the joy of resurrection and life and running that will never end. Running is life. Thank you, Dave! ̴R.M. “… They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31 Running Career Statistics: Over 40,000 miles run since 1980; First Marathon: 1976; Fastest Marathon: 2:51; 91 Marathons; 36 Ultramarathons -14 were 100-milers; Favorite Marathon: Grandma’s Marathon (ran 25 times) David was born in Tyler MN on April 23, 1957 to Norman and Clarice (Pederson) Eitrheim. He was baptized into the death and life of Christ on May 10, 1957 at First English Lutheran Church in Tyler MN. The family moved to Fridley MN when Dave was five. He graduated from Fridley High School in 1975 and was valedictorian of his class. Dave is a graduate of Augsburg College, and the University of Minnesota Medical School in Duluth and Minneapolis. He trained at the Sioux Falls South Dakota Family Medicine Residency Program and joined the staff of Red Cedar Clinic in Menomonie in 1987, serving as a member of the governing board as Red Cedar later became part of the Mayo Clinic Health System. Dave’s interest in medicine and work as a physician included the entire spectrum of life, from delivering hundreds of newborns and following those children as they grew up, to being present and caring for others as they died. He provided clinic and emergency room care, as well as inpatient hospital and nursing home care for thousands of people. As an advocate for social justice, he volunteered regularly at the Free Clinic of the Greater Menomonie Area. His devotion to his medical practice and community was honored in 2004 when he was named Family Physician of the Year by the Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians. Dave’s leadership in medicine has been demonstrated locally in a number of areas: In the early 1990s Dave volunteered as Medical Director to develop the first hospice program in Dunn County. As an avid teacher, in 1998 Dave led the development of the Menomonie Rural Training track Family Medicine Residency Program. He taught students and residents from Duluth, Madison and Rochester for over two decades. As a regional and national leader in Family Medicine, Dave served on the Board of the Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians and was named president in 2014. He led a number of initiatives important to family physicians, including nationally acclaimed work in office efficiency, team-based care and the Patient Centered Medical Home. He was a founding member of the Quality Review Board of the Mayo Clinic. To his colleagues Dave was known as a mentor and friend. A physician of great knowledge, expertise and integrity, he could always be consulted for the latest medical information and technique, knowing that for him, the interest of the patient was the only interest to be considered. For thousands of people in West Central Wisconsin over the last three decades, that knowledge, expertise and integrity were best experienced in a simple office visit. There, his warm heart and clinical expertise and genuine caring would influence many to improved health, and ultimately saved countless lives. ̴M.D.-S Dave is survived by his wife of 33 years Amy Jo Eitrheim (Kaste) of Menomonie, their sons Nathan David of College Station TX, and Eric Steven (Sarah) of Iowa City IA, parents Norman and Clarice (Pederson) Eitrheim of Sioux Falls SD, brother Daniel (Patricia) Eitrheim of Bloomington MN, brother John (Stephanie)Eitrheim of Austin TX, and sister Marie (Bob) Feely of Minneapolis, as well as numerous in-laws, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, friends, colleagues, patients, and running buddies. To say he will be missed is an enormous understatement. Memorial services will be held at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, January 9, 2016 at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Menomonie with Pastor Heather Wigdahl officiating. A private burial will take place at Evergreen Cemetery in Menomonie. There will be visitation from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Friday at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church and one hour prior to the services on Saturday. In lieu of flowers, donations are suggested to: Our Savior’s Lutheran Church Mission Endowment Fund 910-9th Street Menomonie WI 54751; Luther Park Bible Camp 944 – 24 ¼ Street Chetek, WI 54728; or the David C. Eitrheim, MD Rural Resident Scholarship Fund Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians-Foundation 210 Green Bay Road, Thiensville WI 53092, or any charitable organization of your choice.
David C. Eitrheim, M.D. completed the race of his life, crossing the finish line on January 1, 2016, at home, surrounded by family. Finishing time was 58 years 8 months 9 days. Running is life Oh, the thousands of miles! Of time spent in holy... View Obituary & Service Information
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