Dr. Paul John Kalla, 95, of Valley, Alabama, died on November 26, 2018, at his residence.
A memorial funeral Mass will be celebrated at Holy Family Catholic Church in Lanett AL on Saturday, December 1, 2018, at 12:00 PM EST.
A Rosary will be said Friday, November 30, 2018, at 5:30 PM EST with visitation following from 6:00-8:00 PM EST at Bluffton’s Funeral Services in Lanett AL.
Burial will take place at Fort Mitchell National Veteran’s Cemetery in Fort Mitchell, Alabama on Monday, December 3, 2018, at 12:30 PM EST. Father Tom Weise will officiate.
Dr. Kalla is preceded in death by Colette, his wife of sixty-five years. He is survived by his six children, Dr. Peter Kalla (Lise) of Lexington, Ga; Paul Gerard Kalla (Liz) of League City, Tx; Patty Shoultz (Dan) of Chapin, SC; John Kalla of Auburn, Al; Kurt Kalla of Valley, Al; and Loretta Coar of Waycross, Ga. In addition, he will also be remembered by 12 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren along with numerous nieces and nephews.
Dr. Kalla was born May 29, 1923, in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Kalla was a graduate of St. Ignatius High School and John Carroll University in Cleveland. He received his Doctor of Medicine degree from St. Louis University School of Medicine in June 1952. After graduating medical school, Dr. Kalla practiced medicine for 15 years in Cleveland and Fairview Park, Ohio. In May 1971, he and his family moved to Auburn, Alabama, where he joined the staff of the Auburn University Student Health Center (Drake Infirmary) as the Associate Director of Medicine.
In July 1974, he began working with West Point Pepperell’s Medical Department as Associate Medical Director. He remained with West Point Pepperell’s Medical Department until his retirement in 1988, serving as both an associate director and director of the Medical Department. From 1992 to 2006 he further served West Point Stevens Textiles as a Chemical and Occupational Medicine Consultant in the Department of Human Resources at Corporate Headquarters in West Point, Ga. Furthermore, he was the medical advisor for all West Point Stevens occupational nurses; a role he cherished greatly.
Dr. Kalla served his country in World War II with the 84th Infantry division. He was wounded in action in the Holland/Germany sector with the 9th Army in November 1944 and was awarded the Purple Heart.
Dr. Kalla was also very involved within the local community. He was a charter member of the Chambers County Health Council and served as it’s President from 1982 to 1995. Community health projects of the Council included initiation of the school dental programs, the “Let’s Talk” teenage pregnancy prevention program, the Growing Healthy school curriculum program, and the establishment of the very first school nursing program in Chambers County Elementary and Jr. High schools.
In addition to his community involvement, Dr. Kalla was also actively involved with his church, Holy Family Catholic Church. He chaired the St. Vincent De Paul Society for more than 30 years and was a member of the Knights of Columbus. He was also a long-standing member of the church choir.
He was also a life-long supporter of the arts, especially of music and the theatre. He was a charter member of the Painted Rock Arts Society and the Painted Rock Players. He and his wife, Colette, were longtime supporters of the Opelika Arts Association, the Springer Theatre Society, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, the Auburn University Telfair Peet Theatre, and the Montgomery Shakespeare Festival.
He was well known in the Valley area for growing roses. He loved to play pinochle and bridge, but above all, he loved classical and jazz music and musical theatre.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to the Chattahoochee Hospice.
Flowers are delivered by the preferred local florist of Bluffton Funeral Services.
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