April 20, 2018
NCGA Mourns the Loss of Tournament Official William Talmage
William “Bill” Everett Talmage, M.D. a longtime NCGA tournament official, ended his Pacific Crest Trail adventure the afternoon of March 24, 2018 at the age of 73. Bill passed away from a sudden cardiac death on the side of the Ebbetts Pass Scenic Byway, just west of Bear Valley with views of the snow covered Stanislaus National Forest around him.
Talmage was born August 1, 1944 in Southampton, NY to Everett and Mary (Steuber) Talmage. He met his loving wife Carole (Lane) at French Hospital in San Francisco, CA, he an Orthopedic Surgeon and she a Registered Nurse. They married on May 19, 1984 in Sausalito. Living in Mill Valley when sons Richard and Ross were born, the family moved to their current home in the hills above San Rafael, CA in 1988.
His love of golf began at a young age, working as a caddie at prestigious National Golf Links in Southampton, NY. He attended Michigan State University, graduating in 1967 with a B.S. in Microbiology and as a Masters Candidate in Mycology. He pursued medical school at the State University of New York in the Downtown Medical Center, receiving his Doctor of Medicine degree in 1971. Later that year he moved across the country to California. Working in San Francisco General Hospital, he became licensed as a physician by the State of California in 1972. He completed General Surgery and Orthopedic Residencies over the next 5 years at UCSF Medical Center.
In 1977 Bill joined the US Navy and served as a Lieutenant Commander at the Navy Regional Medical Center on the island of Guam for two years. After leaving the Navy, he returned to San Francisco and joined an orthopedic medical practice group. In 1984 he began a solo private practice at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco until his retirement in 2014. He was certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery, was a Fellow in the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, a member of the Western Orthopedic Society and Leroy Abbott Orthopedic Society, a State of California Qualified Medical Evaluator and was an Associate Clinical Professor at UCSF. He was highly praised by his patients and colleagues for his knowledge, bedside manner, and genuine patience in caring for others.
The iconic Pacific Crest Trail–stretching from Mexico to Canada–meant a great deal to Bill who was a lifelong backpacker. Upon retirement his goal was to hike the entire length of the PCT in different sections. In total, he completed about 900 miles of the trail along multiple two- to three-week trips from Yosemite National Park to Crater Lake National Park. The day of his death he participated in an ice and snow navigation course to gain skills for his next hiking section. If you met him on the PCT you knew him by his given trail name “Big Bird” which he earned for his tall stature and love of bird watching.
Bill led a successful, active and remarkable life where he helped and healed many people. He will be remembered fondly by his family, friends, colleagues, patients and people he met while pursuing his favorite activities. He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Carole, his sons Richard (Whitney) and Ross, his sisters Helen Foley and Christine Mitchell (Joe) and his brother Robert “Bob” (Doreen).
A memorial reception and celebration of his life will be held May 20, 2018, beginning at 1pm at the Acqua Hotel in Mill Valley with views of the Mill Valley-Sausalito Bike Path and Mt. Tam, his favorite places to go running. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The First Tee, the Pacific Crest Trail Association, Point Blue or the Dipsea Foundation.