Dr. Eugene R. Van Meter, one of the medical graduates of Washington university, who since 1905 has engaged in practice, is now specializing in diseases of the ear, nose and throat and has developed a high degree of proficiency in that field. A native of Illinois, he was born in Elkhart, Logan county, September 19, 1884. His father, the late William H. Van Meter, was also born in Illinois and came of Dutch ancestry, the family having been founded in America by Just Jans Van Meteren, who came to the new world in 1662 and settled in Ulster county, New York. Later generations changed the spelling of the name to the present form and in all of the wars of the country the family has been represented on the side of patriotism and of progress. William H. Van Meter, the father, was reared and educated in Illinois and there successfully engaged in agricultural pursuits and stock raising. He was also a Civil war veteran, having served with Company F of the Seventy-third Regiment, volunteering in defense of the union and remaining with the army for four years. He spent his entire life in Illinois, passing away September 9, 1905, at the old home, when sixty-four years of age. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Catherine Cleary, is a native of Ohio and of Irish descent. She is still living and occupies the old homestead in Illinois. By her marriage she became the mother of five children, all sons.
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Dr. Van Meter, the youngest of the family, was educated in the public schools of Elkhart, Illinois, and in the high school there, which he attended for two years, while later he spent an equal period as a pupil in the Central high school of St. Louis and was graduated with the class of 1900. After determining upon the practice of medicine as a life work he matriculated in the Washington university and won his M. D. degree upon graduation in 1905. Immediately afterward he entered upon active practice, in which he has continued and in recent years has concentrated his efforts and attention upon ear, nose and throat work, developing considerable skill in that field. He is a member of the staff of the Barnes Hospital and also of the teaching staff of Washington university and he belongs to the St. Louis, Missouri State and American Medical Associations.
In St. Louis, on the 20th of July, 1909, Dr. Van Meter was married to Miss Frances S. Windhorst, a native of St. Louis and a daughter of Dr. M. and Mattie E. (Barwick) Windhorst, her father a well known dentist. Dr. and Mrs. Van Meter have become parents of two children: Frances Estelle, born in Staunton, Illinois, September 3, 1914; and Robert Seymour, born June 1, 1916.
In his political views Dr. Van Meter is a republican where national questions and issues are involved and at local elections casts an independent ballot. He belongs to Staunton Lodge, No. 177, A. F. & A. M., of Staunton, Illinois; also Staunton Chapter, No. 227, R. A. M.; and to Mississippi Valley Consistory of East St. Louis. He has likewise crossed the sands of the desert to the Mystic Shrine and has ever been recognized as a loyal and exemplary follower of the craft. He belongs to the University Club and to the Presbyterian church and his life has ever been guided by high and honorable principles. At the time of the World war he served as battalion surgeon of the Three Hundred and Fifty-seventh Infantry of the Ninetieth Division and participated in the battle of St. Mihiel, in which he was wounded. He was commissioned a first lieutenant and was honorably discharged January 22, 1919, after which he resumed the practice of his profession in St. Louis. He turns to hunting and fishing for diversion and recreation, but no outside interests are allowed to interfere with the faithful and conscientious performance of his professional duties.