William B. Pingelton, 88 of Columbia, died Monday, December 3, 2012. Visitation will be from 1 to 3 p.m. Friday, December 7 at Memorial Funeral Home. A funeral service will be held on Saturday, December 8 at 11 a.m. at Little Bonne Femme Baptist Church. Bill is survived by his wife of 32 years, Carolyn "Kay" Pingelton (Rentschler).
Bill was born in West Columbia, Texas in 1924. When he was sixteen years old, he lied about his age to join the U.S. Army-Air Force. While stationed at what is now Edwards Air Force Base, Private Pingelton learned that a new plane had been delivered and was scheduled to be warmed up for the first time at 5 a.m. The following day Bill jumped the gun at 2 a.m. and became the first soldier to start the B-24 bomber.
After World War II, using the GI bill, he completed an undergraduate degree in Chemistry at the University of Texas at Austin where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He then graduated from medical school at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. He was in Dallas at Parkland General Hospital for an internship and then residency in Little Rock, Arkansas. Dr. Pingelton completed his medical residency at Louisville General Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky.
In 1957, Dr. Pingelton moved to Columbia and taught at the University of Missouri Medical Center for a year. He opened his private practice in OB/GYN the following year. Over the next several decades, he delivered thousands of babies in mid-Missouri. Dr. Pingelton retired from obstetrics in 1987; and in 1995, retired from his remaining gynecological practice. His study of medicine did not end, however, as he continued attending medical seminars and keeping up with the current literature. He was especially proud of mentoring medical students with the University of Missouri. Bill and Kay enjoyed retirement on several mission trips with Little Bonne Femme Baptist Church.
At the time of his death, Bill and Kay were headed down to their favorite bookstore in Jefferson City. Bill never tired of books, learning, teaching, or talking about the Gulf Coast, World War II or medicine. He loved spending time with Kay (aka "Fluffy") and their two dogs, Lacy and Max.
Bill was preceded in death in 2009 by his former wife, Virginia Pingelton. He is survived by his four children with Virginia and their families: Dan Pingelton and his daughter Hannah; Nancy Pingelton; Karen Pingelton; and Tim Pingelton and his wife Sophie and their two children, Eddie and Margaret. Bill is also survived by his step-children with Kay, James Durk and his daughter Shelby Scroggins; and Brenda Broxton and her husband Ron and their children Jacob and Katelin Watson.
Memorial contributions in Bill's honor may be made to the Friends of the Daniel Boone Regional Library or the McCambridge House.