Celebration of Life ceremony held for Dr. Lou Mauney
Saturday afternoon, shortly before the Celebration of Life ceremony for Dr. Lou Mauney began, Pine Island United Methodist Church was full. The church parking lots were full with people parking on the grass and as far away as the Elks Club.
Because of the size of the crowd in attendance for the memorial, a second “overflow” room was set up in the office building next door where friends of Mauney could watch a telecast of the ceremony.
Pine Island United Methodist Church Pastor Eric McCrea opened the ceremony by welcoming everyone.
“It is our honor to hold this celebration for Dr. Lou Mauney, one of the icons of our island community,” McCrea said. “Dr. Mauney’s impact in this community is given testimony by the number of folks who came out today.”
Mauney died Sept. 19. Known to many as ‘Lou’, Mauney was born in Gastonia, N.C., on Dec. 23, 1951. After graduating from high school, Mauney served in the United States Air Force before entering the University of South Florida. In June 1981, he graduated medical school and in 1983 began practicing medicine out of a small office in Matlacha.
“Dr. Mauney opened his first office on Pine Island Road in the small building where the Burger Hut was,” friend, neighbor and patient Carlyn Herring said. “The entire place consisted of a bathroom, a small reception room, a small office and a small examination room – that’s all there was back in 1983.”
Today the office is on Stringfellow Road and part of the Millenium Physicians Group, a primary care practice in Southwest Florida.
Numerous people requested the opportunity to speak at the celebration but because of time constraints, Mauney’s son, Derrick Mauney, and sister, Jane Fowler, spoke.
Derrick, on behalf of the family, expressed their deepest gratitude for the overwhelming attendance and the Pine Island community for their help.
“My father wanted everybody to have a better life so he dedicated his life to helping others improve their situation,” Derrick said. “When I was sick, he took care of me; when I was hungry, he fed me; when I was in jail, he bailed me out four times. When I was broke, he gave me money; when I needed advice, he gave me sound advice. Whenever no one else was there for me, my dad never left me alone.
“No matter how many times I messed up my life, my dad was there to pick me up, dust me off, smack me upside the head. He never hesitated, never blinked dad was always there for me. In short, he was my doctor, my nurse, my friend, my counselor, my provider, my advisor, my bondsman, my lawyer, my banker, my accountant and my teacher. In other words he was my hero dad. Thank you.”
The United States Air Force sent two members to perform the “13 fold” flag ceremony. The ceremony honors the dedication and sacrifice of veterans with a recitation of the flag service and a silent folding of the flag. The folded flag is presented top the family.
“I knew Dr. Mauney since he arrived here,” Cape Coral resident Gary Giebels said. “Dr. Mauney was a very special guy and much more than a doctor he was a very special friend. Whenever I had a appointment, we always took more time to discuss politics than medicine.”
“In all his years here, Dr. Mauney was so much more than a doctor,” Herring said. “He was an interventionist, a social worker and even a marriage counselor but to his patients he became a friend.”
A reception and pot-luck luncheon were also held.