Dr. Robert Roy Payne, 92, of Topeka, KS, passed away on Tuesday, May 10, 2022, at St. Francis Hospital. He was born on May 23, 1929, at home in Cadmus, KS to parents Roy Melville Payne and Leona Blanche McMichael. He attended the one-room Cadmus grade school through seventh grade, after which the family moved to a farm outside of Garnett, KS in the summer of 1941. Bob attended 8th grade at Irving grade school. He then attended Garnett High School and was salutatorian of the 1946 graduating class. While in high school, Bob participated in athletics, lettering in football, basketball, and track. He also played the trombone in band and sang in choral groups.
Bob graduated from the University of Kansas in January 1951. After college he went on to medical school and graduated from the University of Kansas School of Medicine in 1955. He was an intern at Milwaukee County General Hospital from July 1955-1956. After that, Bob served in the United States Navy as a Lt. Sr. Grade and was at sea for 14 months on four different destroyers. While on duty, he shipped out to Guantanamo Bay for several weeks and then went to the Mediterranean with the Sixth Fleet. He was in the Mediterranean for three months, spent time in the English Channel, and then went to Ghent, Belgium via the Ghent Canal. Bob spent his final 10 months of duty treating enlisted men and their dependents at Naval Station Norfolk in Norfolk, VA. He was discharged in December 1958. He transferred to the Ready Reserve on March 30, 1964 and was promoted to LCDR on July 1, 1964.
After being discharged from the Navy, Bob took a family practice in Sacramento County Hospital for one and a half years. He then moved to Craig, CO, where he started a family practice with Dr. David Thurston. After 3 1/2 years, he took an orthopedic residency at the Dickson-Diveley Clinic in Kansas City, MO from 1964-1966. In January 1967, the family moved to Topeka where he joined the Orthopedic Clinic of Topeka as a board-certified orthopedic surgeon. He worked as an orthopedic surgeon for 27½ years before retiring in 1994.
During his career, Bob was chief of staff at Santa Fe Hospital for two years and served on many committees at Stormont Vail and St. Francis hospitals. He was also president of the Kansas Orthopedic Society for two years.
Bob married Doris Mae Kendall on January 16, 1954, at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Topeka. He was a member of the First Congregational Church, Topeka Lions Club, Fortnightly Club, and the Topeka Country Club. He was an avid sports fan and player. He loved to watch KU basketball and football and had season tickets to KU football and basketball games for many years. He played tennis, golf, and table tennis, and also enjoyed bowling. He was an avid reader and especially enjoyed reading about history. Bob loved to take trips and traveled around the U.S., Canada, and Europe with family and friends.
First and foremost, Bob was a kind, caring, giving man, both to his many patients over the years, and to his family and friends. He attended nearly all of his children’s sports events, band concerts, recitals and theatrical productions. He won the Kansas State Friends of Education award in 1985 and was inducted into the Topeka West High School Sports Hall of Fame on November 30, 1999 for his dedication and service to Topeka West and other high school athletes. He volunteered to be on the sidelines of nearly every Topeka West football game, home and away, readily available to treat any athletic injuries. He and two colleagues also held a clinic from 4-6pm on Mondays to treat area high school students with athletic injuries.
Bob was preceded in death by his son, Paul Payne, his parents, two brothers, Paul Payne and William Payne, and two sisters, Elizabeth McDonald and Doris W. Payne.
He is survived by his wife Doris, his son Kendall Payne and his wife Lisa of Coffeyville, his daughter Ellen Jensen and her husband Jeff of Lawrence, and his grandson Ryan Payne of Leland, NC.
Memorial services will be 11am on Saturday, May 21, 2022 at the First Congregational Church. Private inurnment will be at Memorial Park Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to First Congregational Church, 1701 SW Collins Ave., Topeka, KS 66604, or Brewster Place, 1205 SW 29th St., Topeka, KS 66611.
To leave a message for Bob’s family, please visit www.PenwellGabelTopeka.com.