MUSC Marks Passing of Robert Gordon, DDS, Board of Trustee Member

Contact: Sheila Champlin

March 15, 2018

CHARLESTON, SC – The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) community is marking the passing of Robert C. Gordon, DDS, a member of the MUSC/MUHA Board of Trustees since April 2017. Dr. Gordon, 75, died on Thursday, March 8, at his home after an extended illness. He had been an Orangeburg dentist since 1972 and was representing the Sixth District during his work on the board.

On Friday, March 16, beginning at 6:30 p.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church, 185 Boulevard Street, Orangeburg, South Carolina, the following organizations will conduct their memorial services: Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., and The Links, Inc.

Memorial services and a celebration of Dr. Gordon’s life will be held on Saturday, March 17, at 11 a.m. at Trinity United Methodist Church in Orangeburg, South Carolina. Interment services will follow immediately at Belleville Memorial Gardens, Orangeburg.

 Born on August 15, 1942, in Williamsburg County, South Carolina, to the late Robert L. and Ruth Cooper Gordon, Robert Calvin Gordon was the third of five children. He was educated in Williamsburg County schools. He graduated from Benedict College with a Bachelor of Science in biology in 1963, and went on to earn a Doctorate of Dental Surgery from Howard University in 1969.

Dr. Gordon taught science for two years in Greenwood, South Carolina, before attending dental school. He was commissioned into the United States Army as a 1st Lieutenant in April 1969, where he practiced on active duty at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, until 1972. He served in the United States Army Reserve for 24 years as a dentist retiring as a Colonel in 1996. Dr. Gordon and his family moved to Orangeburg in 1972, where he worked in a mobile dental unit for the health department. He was the longest practicing dentist in Orangeburg having served patients in the community for 45 years. He started his private practice in 1973, and practiced until June 2017.

Raised in Bethesda Methodist Church, Dr. Gordon was a faithful member of Trinity United Methodist Church where he served for many years on the finance committee. He was a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity and a Life Member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated. He was a member of several professional organizations including the Edisto Dental Study Club, South Carolina Dental Association, American Dental Association, National Dental Association, International College of Dentists, and the Palmetto State Medical, Dental, and Pharmaceutical Association. He served as the first African American president of the Orangeburg chapter of the Kiwanis International. He was on the Board of Visitors at Claflin University and the Board of Trustees at the Medical University of South Carolina.

In addition to his parents, Dr. Gordon was preceded in death by his wife of 46 years, Catherine Matthews Gordon; brother, Dr. Rudolph Giles Gordon, Sr.; and sister, Joyce Loraine Gordon.

Dr. Gordon is survived by his daughters Donna Gordon Green (Gregory) of Fredericksburg, Virginia, Audrey Elaine Gordon (Northan Golden) of Orangeburg, South Carolina, and Helen Gordon Gary (Brian) of Montgomery, Alabama; one sister, Jo Emily Knox (Nathaniel) of Columbia, Maryland; one brother, William Gilbert Gordon of Atlanta, Georgia; three sisters-in-law, Margie Giles of Lane, South Carolina, Glenda Tucker (Frank) of Columbia, South Carolina, and Vivian Matthews of Greeleyville; grandchildren, David, Joseph, Alexis, and Lila Green of Fredericksburg, Virginia, Robert and Matthew Golden of Orangeburg, South Carolina, and Claire Gary and Brian Gary, Jr. of Montgomery, Alabama; one aunt, Delsenia Gordon of Kingstree, South Carolina; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.

About MUSC

Founded in 1824 in Charleston, MUSC is the state's only comprehensive academic health system, with a unique mission to preserve and optimize human life in South Carolina through education, research and patient care. Each year, MUSC educates more than 3,200 students in six colleges – Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy – and trains more than 900 residents and fellows in its health system. MUSC brought in more than $300 million in research funds in fiscal year 2023, leading the state overall in research funding. MUSC also leads the state in federal and National Institutes of Health funding. Learn more about our academic programs.

As the health care system of the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest-quality and safest patient care while educating and training generations of outstanding health care providers and leaders to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Patient care is provided at 16 hospitals (includes owned or governing interest), with approximately 2,700 beds and four additional hospital locations in development, more than 350 telehealth sites and nearly 750 care locations situated in all regions of South Carolina. In 2023, for the ninth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health University Medical Center in Charleston the Number 1 hospital in South Carolina. Learn more about our patient services.

MUSC has a total enterprise annual operating budget of $5.9 billion. The nearly 26,000 MUSC family members include world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers, scientists, students, affiliates and care team members who deliver groundbreaking education, research, and patient care.