The daughter of a World War II veteran and longtime Butler County dentist called him “a brave warrior” because of the resiliency he displayed after his mother and wife died.
“He was an inspiration to so many, many people,” Paula “Gigi” Hirsch said. “He was such an incredibly genuine, kind and loving person.”
Her father, Dr. David Hirsch, of Oxford, died Saturday. He was 98.
Hirsch, a resident of Oxford since 1982 and formerly a resident of Hamilton, was born in Cincinnati on Oct. 8, 1920. The family moved to Hamilton when he was an infant. He graduated from Hamilton High School in 1938, attended Miami University and then graduated from the Ohio State University School of Dentistry in 1943.
He served as a dentist in an Engineer Combat Battalion in World War II in England, France and Germany and was honorably discharged in 1946 with a rank of captain. He returned to Hamilton, where he practiced dentistry for more than 50 years until he retired in 1989.
His daughter said her dad always welcomed other dentists into the area, and his patients solicited his dental advice even after he retired.
“He was highly respected in the profession,” she said. “He just always showed kindness to others. He was beloved.”
She said her grandmother died when her father was 11 and her mother, Sylvia Barger Hirsch, died in 1985 at age 63.
“He kept fighting,” she said.
When he lived in Oxford, he befriended many residents and typically met them four times a week for coffee at McDonald’s or Kroger, his daughter said.
“Very active social life,” she said. “He had a tremendous social structure.”
Her father never hesitated to speak his mind. He held nothing back, she said. So in his latter years, there was “no reason for closure,” she said.
“The way he was,” she said, “it was beautiful to see. He was at peace.”
He is survived by three children: Michael Hirsch, 69, of Santa Fe, N.M.; Jeffrey Hirsch, 68, of Hamilton and Paula “Gigi” Hirsch, 64, of Watertown, Mass. He is also survived by his sister, Betty Levin, of Charlotte, N.C., two grandchildren, Molly Hirsch and Benjamin Hirsch, and two great-grandchildren, Lilly Anne and Emiline Kobus.
The funeral took place Monday.