William M. Lamers, Jr., M.D.


William M. Lamers, a doctor and 26-year resident of Malibu, died Feb. 2 at the age of 80.

Lamers was born on Christmas Eve 1931 to William and Mary Lamers of Milwaukee, Wis. Both his mother and father were accomplished poets and authors and continuing influences in his life.

After graduating from Marquette University School of Medicine in 1958, Lamers performed an internship at St. Mary’s Medical Hospital in San Francisco. Later he completed his residency in general psychiatry and a National Institutes of Mental Health Fellowship in child psychiatry at Cincinnati General Hospital in Ohio.

Lamers was most widely known for his groundbreaking work in severe, chronic pain relief and for his founding and continued role in the interdisciplinary home care hospice model, a model now used worldwide. Lamers spent most of his life, in his words, “in the professional pursuit of alleviating physical as well as emotional pain and suffering.”

Lamers was the first physician to start a hospice in the United States. He was also a founder, with reverend John Thornton and social worker Barbara Hill, of the first home care hospice in 1974, Hospice of Marin (now Hospice by the Bay) in Northern California.

In addition to his professional pursuits, Lamers enjoyed literature, history, science, poetry, arts, cooking, music, fishing, laughter and Marquette basketball.

Lamers is survived by his wife Elizabeth; his son William III and daughter-in-law China of Novato, Calif.; his son Mark and daughter-in-law Laura of Eureka, Calif.; his daughter Jennifer of Tiburon, Calif.; his stepdaughter Sabrina De Fillipis and husband Robert of Frederick, Md; his stepdaughter Monique Sofen and husband Al of Suffern, N.Y.; and his grandchildren Matthias, Ian, Alexander, Thea, Nick, Will and Jessica. He is also survived by his former wife Clara of San Rafael, Calif.; his brother John and sister-in-law Sallie of Fort Worth, Texas; his brother Ed and sister-in-law Judy of Chandler, Ariz. and many nieces and nephews. Bill was preceded in death by his sisters Barbara Clare and Mary Agnes Mohr.

A memorial service will take place Sat., Feb. 18, at Conejo Mountain Funeral Home, 2052 Howard Rd. in Camarillo at 3 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to the Livingston Memorial Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice, 1996 Eastman Avenue, Suite 101, Ventura, CA 93003.