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Local doctor leaves behind a legacy of medical innovation in eastern Idaho

Pocatello

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POCATELLO (KPVI) – Eastern Idaho lost a local leader on Wednesday. Doctor Lloyd Call of Pocatello was 99-years-old when he passed away.

Born in Rigby in 1921, Call graduated from Pocatello High School, then Stanford University and then Jefferson Medical School. He was very active in the Pocatello Rotary Club and the Idaho State Civic Symphony, but what he’s most known for is his legacy of medical innovation in Idaho.

“It was one of 50 first all-electric EKGs made and I brought that with me,” Dr. Call told KPVI last year. “I bought it in my last year of residency in Utah. And we used it down there. When I moved up here, I put it in my car and we came up.”

The EKG lead to the creation of something that is now an industry standard.

“That was the first Intensive Care Unit in the state of Idaho … and I had to convince them it was something worthwhile. They gave us $16,000,” Call said.

When cardiac medicine was something people around the country had to travel miles to receive, Dr. Call was bringing the latest technology in nuclear imagery to Pocatello years before any of the bigger cities.

“It was very expensive at that time, so I went out and purchased it and gave it to the one hospital and I said it will be yours when it’s paid for. I will give you patients as they need it. In two years, I gave them the title,” Call said. “I was categorized in the newspaper by my fellow physicians for bringing things to Pocatello that didn’t belong here.”

It’s an example that has brought inspiration and healing to so many in eastern Idaho, and the Call legacy in healthcare extends even further. There’s been a Dr. Call in eastern Idaho for the past 100 years.

Call’s father, Dr. O.F. Call, was one of the first doctors in Idaho. Lloyd’s son, Dr. Benjamin Call, has been a cardiologist in eastern Idaho for over 30 years.

“Dad’s always been an innovator,” says Ben. “He (was) always on the cutting edge and he inspires me. I’ve thought about his example many times over the years. We practiced together for eight years and to hear these stories and to see the things that he’s done is inspiring.”

Ben says his ultimate goal is to leave this world a better place just like his dad did.

Lloyd has another son, Tom, who is a dentist in Pocatello and his son Brandon graduated from dental school last year and joined his father’s practice.

Lloyd’s memorial service was held on Saturday.

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