I thought it would be great for our readers to learn about our councilman, Dr. Tom Hayhurst. We have his column in The Waynedale News and are kept well informed about our city government and in particular, the items that affect our area. He really means it when he invites people to call him with their thoughts, concerns, and suggestions.
Dr. Hayhurst is a Pulmonary Specialist with the Indiana Medical Associates at the Lutheran Office Building. His practice consumes 50-60 hours each week plus he is on night call every 5th night. The night calls will cease as of January 1 and for that he is thankful.
Tom grew up in Fort Wayne and graduated from North Side High School. His medical degree came from Indiana University. A three-year residency followed this at Emory University in Atlanta where he specialized in Internal Medicine. His pulmonary training was at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. While there, he and his wife, Judy enjoyed attractions the city offered on weekends such as symphonies, the October Fest, plays, etc. In the early 70's, he served two years in the Air Force and was a medical officer specializing in internal medicine.
The Hayhursts have two daughters. One is a doctor, Anne and is married to a doctor. They live in Louisville and have one child. Their other daughter, Susan is doing graduate work at the University of Maine in Marine Biology. She recently presented a paper at the University of South Africa. Judy, Tom's wife, was able to travel there with her.
Judy's father, Cecil Rice, was principal at Ben Geyer Middle School during the time our city experienced integration problems. It was a tough time. He is no longer living but Judy's mother is still living and the Hayhursts treasure her greatly. Tom's parents passed away in the 90's.
I asked what sparked his interest in medicine.
"It actually started in 5th grade at Forest Park School. Our teacher really pushed us and made us read aloud from the science book until we made a mistake. Then we sat down and the next student read, etc." The interest in science and biology developed into the study of medicine. However, over thirty years ago, he considered dropping out of that field because he had a great interest with becoming involved in politics. John Robinson, a family friend and city councilman at the time, advised him to keep up with the medicine. John said, "Sometime down the line, you may have the opportunity to have a role in government." Tom thought about that and after practicing medicine for some 25 plus years the opportunity came for him to be involved in city government.
"Working on City Council makes me appreciate our forefathers giving us the rules we live by. The structure and framework has stood the test of time. Those who framed the United States and individual State Constitutions were brilliant men. These rules were established for the good of our country", stated Tom. "There are three things I try to emphasize for our city: economic development, improvement of roads and streets, and better control of crime."
Dr. Hayhurst also strongly believes in campaign finance reform for our country. He states, "I favor limiting total campaign dollars spent; the important thing is for the candidates to sell themselves." He and his wife, Judy, drive to neighborhoods within his district. They take their daughter's dog and stroll through the area talking to people about concerns and suggestions they may have to make our city a better place to live.
Tom hosts a call-in program on the local access station, City Channel-cable 58, from the library. "90% of the people calling make a lot of sense. Their questions and comments are the same ones I would think about. I'm used to diversity in people. In my medical practice, I may have a patient who is a corporation president and the next one may be a poor soul who has almost destroyed his life with drug, alcohol, or smoking problems. I strongly believe that any patient I see deserves the best care I can give them. I won't refuse to deal with anyone because of their life style."
We spoke of the current non-smoking ban in restaurants. An interesting fact about the issue is that most of the candidates voting for that law were re-elected.
Dr. Tom Hayhurst is an upbeat person. We thank you, Dr. Hayhurst for the care and concern you have for our community.