1940 — 2021
Dr. Paul Denning Stull Jr. died on Aug. 30, 2021, at home in Beaverton at the age of 81.
Paul is survived by his wife, Alice Stull; children, Ann Marie Clark, Monica Christler, Paul Stull III, Matthew Stull and Christopher Stull; seven grandchildren; and his siblings, Philip Stull, Karen Howell, Patrick Stull and John Stull.
Paul was born in Columbus, Ohio, to Paul and Edith Stull. He spent his childhood in Ohio, moving to Arizona and then California in his teens. After attending several high schools, he spent his junior and senior year at St. Augustine’s in San Diego. From there he went on to study chemistry, zoology and psychology at San Diego State University, obtaining a bachelor’s degree in 1963. Immediately thereafter he moved to Washington, D.C., to study medicine at Georgetown University. During the summer of 1964 he briefly returned to San Diego to marry his college sweetheart, Alice McKee. Their subsequent honeymoon was an eventful trip across America, driving an ancient Volkswagen Beetle from California to Washington, D.C.
Following his graduation from medical school, Paul accepted an internship in surgery, a residency in urology and fellowships in nephrology and transplantation surgery at the University of Kentucky. While in Kentucky, Paul spent his summers working sunup to sundown as the only doctor in an underprivileged, rural county in Appalachia. Throughout the 1960s and early 70s Paul also served as an officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Upon the completion of his medical training in 1972 and an honorable discharge from the Navy, the family moved to Astoria, where Paul established a private practice in urology, nephrology and surgery. Within five weeks of opening his practice, Paul performed Clatsop County’s first transplant surgery.
Over the next three decades Paul worked tirelessly to care for his community. As the only urologist in the Northwest corner of Oregon and the southwest corner of Washington state, he traveled up and down the coast seeing patients from Ilwaco, Washington, to Wheeler and everywhere in between.
Paul never rested on his laurels. Throughout his career he continued to study medicine, staying abreast of the latest in technique, technology and science. He was one of the very first doctors to learn and perform ultrasound-guided radioactive seed brachytherapy for prostate cancer with the innovators of the procedure at Northwest Hospital in Seattle. He routinely made the 8-hour round trip, determined to provide his patients with the highest level of care. He also served for many years on the urological teaching staff at the University of Oregon’s Medical School in Portland.
In the 1980s, after seeing many patients and families struggle with end-of-life care and pain management, Paul wanted to offer his community better, more dignified solutions to these difficult situations. He began professional training in the up-and-coming medical disciplines of palliative care and hospice management. He was awarded the Roxane Visiting Scholars Program Fellowship at Northwestern University Memorial Hospital Hospice in Chicago and he passed a national board certification in hospice and palliative medicine. In the mid-1990s, in collaboration with state Sen. Joan Dukes, he authored Oregon Senate Bill 1071, which established a task force to study and improve pain management and end-of-life care in Oregon. His efforts did not go unappreciated. He eventually won the Elizabeth Wessinger Award for excellence in hospice leadership. Paul went on to become medical director of several local hospices, all while continuing to run his busy urological practice.
Over the years, Paul and Alice became the proud parents of five children. His daughters and sons all remember him for his incredible intellect, lifelong love of learning, boundless imagination and deep devotion to his family, friends, patients and faith. During his time in Astoria, Paul and his family were active members and supporters of the local Roman Catholic parish, St. Mary Star of the Sea.
After retiring in 2000, Paul and Alice eventually moved to Beaverton to live closer to several grandchildren. Paul, or Papa, as he became known, devoted himself to his grandchildren, care of Alice and tending to his garden.
A funeral mass is scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday at St. Pius X Catholic Church, 1280 NW Saltzman Road in Portland. All are welcome to attend in person. If you wish to join virtually, you can view the funeral Mass live at www.stpius.org/s/livestream.