Wednesday, May. 29, 2024

ROBERT WOUTERS LEYEN

Robert Wouters Leyen, a.k.a. Dr. Bob, an event rider, died April 14 in Gig Harbor, Wash. He was 57.
Born in Nashville, Tenn., Dr. Leyen graduated from Webb School of Knoxville in 1969, where he was All Mid-South Football and Basketball, as well as a key member of the school’s champion track team. He earned a degree in psychology from Yale University (Conn.), where he was also defensive tackle All Ivy for two consecutive years.

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Robert Wouters Leyen, a.k.a. Dr. Bob, an event rider, died April 14 in Gig Harbor, Wash. He was 57.
Born in Nashville, Tenn., Dr. Leyen graduated from Webb School of Knoxville in 1969, where he was All Mid-South Football and Basketball, as well as a key member of the school’s champion track team. He earned a degree in psychology from Yale University (Conn.), where he was also defensive tackle All Ivy for two consecutive years.

Following graduation, Dr. Leyen was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys and later traded to the Detroit Lions. Following the trade, he pursued a medical degree from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis.

Dr. Leyen practiced emergency medicine in East Tennessee until 1983, when he moved to Duke University (N.C.), where he completed a general surgery residency, an orthopedic surgery residency and a sports medicine fellowship. He continued practicing orthopedic surgery in Tacoma and Olympia, Wash., for the following 18 years, where he assisted teaching musculoskeletal anatomy at the University of Washington Medical School.

In addition to his medical career, Dr. Leyen enjoyed working with America’s veterans and soldiers at Madigan Army Medical Center, where he volunteered his time through the Red Cross. His volunteer work continued to Reach Ministries, where he was on the Board of Directors.

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Dr. Leyen actively competed in eventing in U.S. Eventing Association Area VII and mentored many young riders. When not working, he spent time riding his horse, Large Marge. An avid outdoorsman, he was a National Outdoor Leadership School and Outward Bound graduate. 

Survivors include his wife, Jennifer Albright Leyen, and his daughter, Elizabeth Leyen.

Memorial donations may be made to the Robert W. Leyen Memorial Fund, c/o Columbia Bank, 1301 A St., Suite 800, Tacoma, WA 98402. 

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