Memorial Services Planned For Former Geisinger Leader

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PLAINS TOWNSHIP – Officials at Geisinger Health System said a memorial service is being planned for the first chief of staff at Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center.

A spokesman said Dr. David Kistler, 89, died at a Geisinger hospice facility on Sunday morning.

Hospital officials said Kistler was the first ever chief of staff in 1981, after hospitals in Nanticoke, Pittston and Wyoming Valley closed and merged to create what is now the Geisinger Wyoming Valley Medical Center.

The name of the third-generation doctor is also on a clinic on Wilkes-Barre Boulevard, and the elementary school on Old River Road is named after the long-time Wilkes-Barre Area School District board member.

Geisinger Health System’s Vice President for Community Relations worked with Kistler for more than two-decades, and said the doctor impressed younger generations and was thrilled to talk about the advancements the hospital had made, shortly before he died.

“He was always still learning. It wasn`t like he trained at an earlier time and didn`t understand this. He was really an excellent physician until the last day he practiced,” said Conrad Schintz. “He felt so good about all the specialties we brought to this community, and that he`s been part of that. He felt really good about that, and he also recognized all the people that contributed to it."

A viewing for Kistler is scheduled for Wednesday afternoon in Shavertown, followed by a funeral Thursday morning in Wilkes-Barre.

Family members are asking that instead of flowers, donations be made to:

Kistler Scholarship Fund administered by the Luzerne Foundation,
140 Main St., 2nd Floor,
Luzerne, PA 18709.