William J. “Bill” Hardin, MD, passed away on Tuesday, October 9, 2018 at the age of 81, after a battle with cancer. He was born July 4, 1937 in Jackson, Mississippi, son of the late James W. and Doris “Dot” Hardin. He graduated from Jackson Central High School in 1955 and with Honors from Millsaps College in Jackson, Mississippi in 1958. Shortly after, he married Blythe Jeffrey and together, they recently celebrated 60 years of marriage.
Bill pursued a degree in medicine, graduating with High Honors from Baylor College of Medicine in 1962. After completing an internship at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, he was a Captain and Flight Surgeon in the United States Air Force. Upon completion of his military service, he completed a general surgery residency at the University of Mississippi Medical Center as well as an American Cancer Society Clinical Fellowship and a Surgical Oncology Fellowship at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
Bill made Temple, Texas his family’s home in 1970 when he joined Scott & White Clinic, where he served as Senior Staff Surgeon and Director of the Division of General Surgery until 1979. He then opened Temple Surgical Clinic, a private practice he owned and operated until 1995. During this time he served in various roles with King’s Daughters Hospital, including Chief of Surgery, a member of the Board of Directors, and President of Medical Staff. Bill was a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of Texas Surgical Society. While at the helm of Temple Surgical Clinic, he consulted with and treated patients throughout Central Texas. He retired from practice after 39 years in 2001.
Bill was involved in many community activities, serving as President of the Central Bell County Chapter of The American Cancer Society as well as the Director of the Bell County Health District. His passion for public service extended beyond medicine, however. He was an active member of the Temple Lions Club, served as President for Temple Area Swim Club, and served for 30 years on the Board of Directors of First State Bank, Central Texas. Bill also served on the Board of Directors of the Temple Chamber of Commerce from 1985-88, and was elected and served two terms on the Temple City Council, where, as Mayor Pro-Tem championed the first-of-its-kind cigarette smoking ban, leading a successful effort to require Temple restaurants to designate “no-smoking” sections in their establishments.
After retirement, Bill developed a love for raising Longhorn cattle, cutting and splitting firewood, playing golf with friends (who mostly cheated), attending his morning coffee group, and travelling internationally with Blythe. Most of all, however, he loved spending time with his grandchildren.
A devout Christian, Bill was an active member of Christ Episcopal Church in Temple, Texas for more than 40 years. He served as a member of the Vestry and was appointed Senior Warden on three occasions. One of his fondest memories, however, was serving with the men’s breakfast group serving the parishioners on Sunday mornings.
Bill was preceded in death by his parents, James and Doris; and his brother James “Bud” Hardin. He is survived by his wife Blythe; brother Bobby of Jackson, Mississippi; his children, son Jeff of Kerrville, Texas; son Joey of Belton, Texas; daughter Amy of Temple, Texas; son Allen and his wife Morgen of Austin, Texas; and grandchildren Logan, Megan, Joel, Will, and Warner.
Arrangements are under the direction of Harper–Talasek Funeral Home in Temple. A visitation will be held Sunday, October 14 from 5:00 – 7:00 pm at the funeral home. A memorial service will be held at 11:00 am on Monday, October 15 at Christ Episcopal Church in Temple, Texas with Reverend Justin Yawn officiating.
Memorials may be made to Christ Episcopal Church Building Fund, 300 N. Main, Temple, Texas, 76501.
My thoughts and prayers are with all of you in this the saddest of hours. Bill was such a wonderful character with a terrific, if sometimes weird, sense of humor. He was a wonderful friend and I will miss him terribly! He always gave me such grief for being an Aggie! Love to all of you. Kathy
Kathy KayTemple, TX
My thoughts and prayers are with the Hardin family during this difficult time.
Dave ShaklovitzTemple, TX
So very sorry to hear about Dr. Hardin’s passing. I really appreciated his special way of listening to me as a patient. You could tell his was a calling not just a job. He will be missed by so many.
Pam JohnsonBelton, TX
I had the privilege of knowing Bill as a patient, a fellow council member, and most importantly as a friend. He loved to laugh and make you laugh. I have so many great memories of our friendship. He and Blythe succeeded in the most important arena....family. Bill lived his Christian faith everyday. Lisa and I will miss him very much. Blythe, Jeff, Joey, Amy, and Allen --- your husband and dad was truly a great man.
Dennis and Lisa HobbsAustin, TX
Loved your dad, was one of the finest men I knew,
Arnold BragewitzTemple, TX
We are praying for the Lord to surround and fill you all with His Peace and Comfort. May sweet memories be a balm to your sorrow.
Dan and Tammy (Wilson) FolsomHouston, TX
To the Beloved Family;
Please accept me condolences. While I did not have the privilege to know Mr. Hardin, I do know how painful it can be when death takes away someone you love. Find comfort in knowing and appreciating how 'Jehovah God is close to the brokenhearted' (Psalm 34:18). It's consoling to contemplate the promises God has made to remedy our mournful tears. He has empowered His son, Jesus Christ, with the power to restore life again 'on the last day.' (John 5:26 and John 11:24) One day soon, Jesus will awaken Mr. Hardin, calling out his name (as he did his friend, Lazarus). What a reunion it will be!
In the meantime, we can discern from the Holy Bible-that the time is very near when the promise of resurrection will be fulfilled. As we build up our faith, may this hope of seeing Mr. Hardin, fortify you-especially when the waves of sorrow ebb and flow.
You have my deepest sympathy.
Tammy JohnsonLawton, OK
Dr. Harden was a wonderful doctor and a great person. We had many laughs together. I was privileged to work at S&W with him and to observe his leadership in the community. Prayers are with the entire family. RIP good friend.
Neil HaneyBelton, TX
So sad to hear the passing of Mr Hardin. Thoughts and prayers with the Hardin Family. So many wonderful memories from my youth include Mr Hardin with his positive energy and contagious sense of humor.
Kenny RussellCumming, GA
We send our condolences. I've enjoyed many hours of fun conversation with Bill at both the Belton and Temple Coffee Groups. He was great to be around and was certainly an important member of the community. We will miss him. -- Jon & Katie Burrows
Jon & Katie BurrowsTemple, TX
So saddened to hear of Dr. Hardin's passing. He was the best of the best. He saved me during 3 emergency surgeries. Prayers to all.
Irene SimmonsBremond, TX
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Blythe and the Hardin family. Bill was a dear friend and we will miss him very much.
John Bailey & familyBelton, TX
I’m so sorry for your loss. I had the privilege of working with Joey and Blythe when I was younger and enjoyed hearing them both recount family stories that were always humorous (hilarious) and full of fun. Dr. Hardin was a wonderful Husband, Father and Doctor who will be missed. Prayers for the entire family.
Lane KohringMcKinney, TX
I'm sorry for your loss Joey my prayers will be with you and your family.
Scott EwersWaxahachie, TX
Thank you, Dr. Hardin for literally saving my life during an emergency appendectomy, where my appendix had already perforated. You were a great surgeon and a greater man of God 🙏🏻
Charles Van OrdenTemple, TX
We have so many fond memories with the Hardin Family and Bill. We send a heap of love and prayers to carry you through this time.
Ginger and Steve KleypasTemple, TX
Bill was thoughtful leader, respected professional and great guy. A true gentleman. Our prayers and condolences to you.
Aaron & Maria LeibowitzAlexandria, VA
Bill was so sweet and so funny - I loved any time I had a chance to be near him and Blythe. He will be missed by so many of us, and my prayers for comfort go out to Blythe and the rest of Bill’s great family.
Adrian WalkerTemple, TX
An incredibly wonderful gentleman who made the world a better place!
Charles HookerJackson, MS
My heart and prayers go out to your family. My parents love Dr. Hardin. he did surgery on my dad, and saved his life. I had the chance to meet him after he retired when I was working in Surgery when he came to visit. And he did remember my dad. Everyone loved him.
JEANNIE MCLERRANCameron, TX
to Mrs Hardin , Jeff, Joey, Amy, i am so sorry for your lose, my prayers go out to you with my deepest sympathy he was a wonderful man and a wonderful doctor that i got to know as well as you, my prayers are with you and your family,
patty skiddskilleen, TX
Sending love and prayers to the family. Dr Hardin was a great person and a compassionate doctor. He always had a smile on his face. God gained an a great man and mad him an angel. rest in peace and I will cherish memories.
Debbie BaileyTemple, TX
Thinking of you and your family during this difficult time! Praying for you
Rick and Shanna RamirezTemple, TX