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Robert Winter
(June 21, 1932 - June 5, 2014)

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Robert Winter

Passed away at home surrounded by his family after a two year battle with metastatic melanoma. Bob was preceded in death by his mother, Mildred Winter; father, Fred Winter; brother David Ward Winter; son, David Winter and daughter, Karin Winter Jones. He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Jane (Havenhill), daughters Cathy (Gerry Dehkes) and Sarah (Mike Boyer) and son Andrew (Emily), daughter-in-law Terry Winter and son-in-law Dave Jones. He was adored by his eleven grandchildren: Peter, Kirsten, Sarah and Erik Dehkes, Olivia and Abby Boyer, Alec and Lucas Winter, Dena and Evan Winter and Adia Jones.

Bob graduated from Franklin High School, Cedar Rapids, Iowa and went on to attend Grinnell College where he excelled in basketball and pre-med studies. He completed medical school at Washington University in St. Louis and then came to the University of Minnesota for his orthopedic surgery residency program.

Bob went on to become a world-renowned spinal surgeon, treating thousands of patients with debilitating spinal deformities, especially scoliosis. He was also known as an extraordinary teacher, lecturer, writer and researcher. He practiced at Gillette Children’s Hospital for over 35 years. In addition, he was a founding member of the Twin Cities Spine Center at Fairview Hospital and on staff at the University of Minnesota. Bob held numerous professional roles such as President of the Scoliosis Research Society and the Pediatric Orthopedic Society, travelled to 46 countries for medical purposes, wrote over 250 scientific publications, wrote eleven textbooks and 38 book chapters all focused on the treatment of spinal deformities.

Bob’s other passions were many—tennis, travel, especially to Brasil, reading, and knife collecting. He cherished spending time at his home in northern Wisconsin. He loved to visit Camp Highlands, the camp of his youth and the summer home to his mother, father, sons and five grandsons. He will be greatly missed by all those who have had a chance to know and love him.

A private family service will be held in Wisconsin. A public Celebration of Life will take place on Saturday, August 16th at 11 a.m. at the Mendakota Country Club, Mendota Heights, MN. A brief visitation will begin at 10 a.m. A light lunch will be provided following the service.

Memorials in lieu of flowers are preferred. Memorials can be directed to “Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare” in support of children with spinal deformities and their families (200 University Ave. E., St. Paul, MN 55101) or to a charity of your choice.


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