Dr. Warren N. Koontz, longtime Newark area physician and mental health advocate, passed away Friday, February 1, 2013, at the Hospice Inpatient Care Center at Licking Memorial Hospital. Dr. Koontz was born March 14, 1922, in St. Louisville, the son of the late Robert and Lella (Hoover) Koontz. A veteran of the US Army, he served during both WWII and the Korean Conflict. His secondary education endeavors began at Kentucky Christian College in Greyson, Kentucky and he received a B.A. degree in biology and English literature from Miami University at Oxford in 1943, where he had been a member of Phi Sigma Biological Honor Society. On March 14, 1947, he graduated in the top ten of his class from The Ohio State University College of Medicine. From 1947-48, Dr. Koontz served a first year rotating residency at University Hospitals in Iowa City, Iowa. During his second enlistment period in the US Army, Dr. Koontz served a residency in neuro-psychiatry at Brooke Army Hospital in San Antonio, Texas in 1951-52. In 1952-53, he served as a staff psychiatrist & neurologist at the United States Army General Hospital at Fort Knox.
The contributions Dr. Koontz made in primary care medicine and mental health services in Newark and Licking County extended across his entire career and into his retirement. He was a pioneer in community mental health care. His private medical practice of 51 years began at 144 Mount Vernon Road in 1948 and many will remember his office on Hudson Avenue, where he practiced until the OH16 expressway construction project required moving the office to West Main Street. The Moundbuilders Doctors Park was planned and built by Drs. Koontz and Charles Sinsabaugh. He retired from his private practice in 2000.
Dr. Koontz always felt the most vital dimension of his medical practice was in the field of community mental health services. In the era of mental health services being delivered in large inpatient state hospitals, Dr. Koontz co-founded the Moundbuilders Guidance Center in his medical office on Hudson Avenue in 1954. A co-founder of the Licking County Mental Health Association, Dr. Koontz was its first president in 1954. Well into his retirement years, he served as a staff physician at the Moundbuilders Guidance Center.
Dr. Koontz interest in literature continued throughout his lifetime and he especially enjoyed the works of Charles Dickens. He shared his passion for literature, music, travel and hunting with his children creating many fond memories.
Surviving are his wife, Connie Koontz, his seven children, Robert (Carole) of Newark, Marcia Mallett of Wilmington, North Carolina, Alan (Kathy) Koontz of Dublin, Dr. David (Karen) Koontz of Newark, Phillip Koontz of Newark, Warren (Cindy) Koontz of Charleston, South Carolina, Charles (Darlah) Koontz of Montgomery; his former wife and mother of his seven children, Idabell Moschell Koontz of Newark. His grandchildren, Natalie (Brian) Careins, Evan (Rachael) Koontz, Amanda (Wells) Logan, Cameron Mallett, Amy (Sean) Tucker, Claire Koontz, Maxwell Koontz, Spencer Koontz, Seth (Amanda) Koontz, Sarah (Andrew) Fackler, Chelsea Koontz, Andrew Koontz, Annaliese Koontz; his great-grandchildren, Alexander Careins, Elaina Koontz, Caleb Logan, Seth Logan, Hudson Logan, Eliza Logan, Quinton Logan, Eli Logan, Gage Koontz, Hannah Fackler, Hope Fackler; his brother, Don (Ruth) McClelland of Kalamazoo, Michigan; several nieces and nephews; his step children, Cathy (Terry) Keith of Westerville, Louise (Ed) Chaney of Newark, Julie (Dan) Huprich of Granville, Nancy (Randy) Mayberry of Homer, Martha (Patrick) Quinn of Mt. Vernon; step-grandchildren, Cassie (Brad) Blizzard, Catilyn Chaney, Livy Huprich, Maddie Huprich, Ian Huprich, Kalib Quinn, Nicole Quinn, Lucy Quinn, Owen Quinn, Ilene Quinn and a step great-grandchild, Kinley Blizzard.
Memorial contributions may be made to Moundbuilders Guidance Center, Second Presbyterian Church or Hospice Of Central Ohio; envelopes will be available at the funeral home.