Purdon, 62, a native of Pontotoc, died unexpectedly Sunday after a brief, severe illness at Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi, where he had cared for patients for more than four decades.
“Dr. Purdon was a pillar at this hospital and the most generous man I have ever known and he gave his life taking care of patients,” says Sherri DeLashmit, administrative director of the Baptist Heart Care Center at Baptist North Mississippi.
Purdon joined the hospital medical staff in 1968 and served as medical director of the cardiology program since its inception.
“He put Oxford and medical care here on the map,” said Dr. Bubba Morgan, who serves as the president of the Baptist Memorial-North Mississippi medical staff. “It was so unexpected and way too early.”
Purdon was the hospital’s only interventional cardiologist and was well known for his work ethic.
“It will take two full-time intensivists to replace him,” said Oxford surgeon Dr. Walker Byars. “He had a nearly photographic memory about his patients. … It’s a huge, huge loss for us.”
Purdon is survived by his wife Barbara, three daughters, a son, his mother and a sister. His funeral is set for 10 a.m. Thursday at Coleman Funeral Home Chapel in Oxford.