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Washington State Dental Association

Dr. R. Terry Grubb · 1938 - 2013

Editors Note: The WSDA recently lost one of its most respected and beloved members, Dr. R. Terry Grubb, in a tragic motorcycle accident. Grubb was active throughout his career at the local, state and national levels of organized dentistry, serving as president of his component and the WSDA, Second Vice President of the American Dental Association, a Regent on the American College of Dentists, a Fellow in the International College of Dentists and the Pierre Fauchard Society, and a member of the Washington State Dental Quality Assurance Commission, and many others. 

We reached out to contemporaries and colleagues of this extraordinary man to get their impressions of the person so many people held in high regard. Here is what they had to say. Dr. Grubb's obituary follows their remarks.

Dr. Rick Crinzi, Past President, WSDA

Like all of Terry’s friends, my wife Debbie and I are so saddened by this news, it seems so unfair. He was a caring, compassionate and concerned man, and an inspiration to so many. He did so many good works, and helped others in such an unselfish way. He was our friend. He will be remembered and deeply missed. 

Dr. Vic Barry, Past President, WSDA
I have known Dr. Grubb all my professional life. He was always there, no matter if it was a WSDA Communications Committee meeting or a House of Delegates, or an 11th District Caucus, or a small lunch in Chicago. I leaned on him a lot. He was always there, helping, contributing, and caring. The best definition of responsibility I have heard is “always doing what you say you are going to do.” The best definition of integrity is always doing it right. Terry epitomized both. Add to that compassion, loyalty, honor and talent and you begin to get a picture of the consummate professional and warm hearted human being he was. He lived his committment to helping his family, others’ families, friends, colleagues, his patients and staff. He was always there. And he always will be. 

Dr. Denny Homer, Past President, WSDA
I met Terry through our dental society in 1975.  He was always a great mentor and avid promoter of organized dentistry.  Terry gave and gave to our profession, contributing mentally and physically in a way that few will match. I sat next to Terry at lunch, less than a week before his accident, and the good example for all of us is that he was doing what he loved — professionally and personally — right up to the end.

Dr. Robert Merrill
While I have many good memories of Terry and his influence upon me, this is the most profound and probably the most important thing I received from working with him — Terry worked across the hall from me when I first began practice in Wenatchee in 1990. I had two preschool age children at home and before too long we had more as well. Quite soon, I found myself involved in leadership in my professional associations (somehow Terry rubbed off on a person!)  When I was asked to serve in a very time-consuming position for WSDA in the 1990’s I sought Terry’s counsel, since he had been very involved (understatement!) and had encouraged my involvement.

I remember well what he said:  “Rob, you may the best possible person for this position, but we can find somebody else who can take your place in it.  They may not do the job you would do, but I’d like you to reflect on the fact that while we can find somebody to take your place there, nobody can take your place as a father to your children.”

That counsel had a profound positive impact on my life with my children and my family as a whole.  I have been blessed through my association with this great and kind colleague.

Dr. Bill Ten Pas, Former 11th District Trustee: 
Terry always had a smile on his face and kind word. He loved dentistry and his family; especially his wife Sharen. He lived and loved life to the fullest. He was always positive. He was a team player but was unafraid to give you his opinion. I spoke with him at the latest PNDC and he said life was good. His loss has caused a void.

Dr. R. Terry Grubb · 1938-2013

Grubb was born at Deaconess Hospital in Wenatchee, Wash. on December 27, 1938, to Lee and Hazel Grubb. He was christened Richard Terry, but he was always known by his middle name. 

He and his older brother, Ed, had many adventures on their family orchard in Sunnyslope while growing up. Terry attended Sunnyslope School, Wenatchee High School, Wenatchee Valley College, the University of Washington, and the U.W. School of Dentistry, graduating in 1967. He loved living in Wenatchee, and had many fond memories of the years spent with his cousins throughout the Valley. He always enjoyed the family potlucks and gatherings with the Grubbs and Bromileys and their families. 

He opened a dental practice in September of 1967, and has practiced in the Wenatchee Valley ever since. He deeply cared for his patients and their families, and loved and respected his faithful clinical staff, who co-labored with him at the dental office. Grubb became actively involved in the dental community by serving on boards, committees, and as an officer in various dental organizations. His generosity was known by many, even though he preferred to keep those things “under the radar.” 

A list of his professional accomplishments would be pages long, but some highlights include serving as President of the North Central Washington Dental Society and the Washington State Dental Association. He also served as a Second Vice President of the American Dental Association, a Regent on the American College of Dentists, a Fellow in the International College of Dentists and the Pierre Fauchard Society, and a member of the Washington State Dental Quality Assurance Commission. 

Grubb loved mentoring other young leaders, and was an inspiration to many in the dental profession, in his church, in the community, and in his family. He was a longtime member of the Wenatchee Free Methodist Church, where he served in multiple volunteer positions. 
 He loved the outdoors and taught his children and grandchildren to respect and enjoy God’s creations. He was on an annual “road trip” with his motorcycle buddies in Oregon when something caused him to veer off the road and into a ravine, where he died instantly. Although the cause of the accident is unknown, we are certain it was outside his control because he was a skilled, careful and experienced rider.

Grubb is survived by his wife of 32 years, Sharen; his four children: Mindy, Liesl, Mike and Garrett, and their spouses, Darryl Wall, David Bohan, Julie Grubb and Dawn Shores; and 11 grandchildren: Devin Grubb, Spencer, Mitch, Ethan, Nik, Alaina and Maia Wall, Neil and Trent Bohan, and Madi and Molly Grubb.

A Celebration of Life Service will be held on Monday, July 1, 2013, at Wenatchee Free Methodist Church. The family asks that anyone wishing to make a charitable contribution in Terry’s name send it to either Seattle Children’s Hospital or the Washington Oral Health Foundation.
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