Dr. Dermody, Vero’s first pediatric dentist

Dr. Francis J. Dermody, 70, the first pediatric dentist to practice in Vero Beach, died Feb. 16 at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville.

He practiced for 35 years and was known for his charitable works throughout Indian River County. Among the causes he donated his time to were the Indian River County Health Department Dental Clinic for 32 years, the Vero Beach VNA Hospice House, the Head Start Coalition, the Baptist Mobile Dental Clinic, Jesse’s Children in the Dominican Republic and Habitat for Humanity.

He was also a member of St. Helen Catholic Church, where he taught classes, served as a lecturer and Eucharistic minister, made hospital and nursing home visits, served on the Parish Council, was a member of The Knights of Columbus, chaired the St. Helen Golf Tournament, was Harvest Festival Chairman, and a former board member of John Carroll High School and the ARC.

Dr. Dermody was born in Pinehurst, N.C., and spent his childhood in Manchester-By-The-Sea, Mass.  He moved to Florida in 1971, settling in Vero Beach in 1976.

Survivors include his wife of 44 years, Lois Dermody; sons, Dr. F. Joseph (Veronica) Dermody, Jr. and Dr. Christopher M. (Dr. Rachelle) Dermody, all of Vero Beach; daughters, Dr. Pamela Dermody (John) Chnupa of Houston, and Lynn M. Dermody of Manchester-By-The-Sea; grandsons, Alex Dermody, Noah Dermody, Peyton Dermody, and Connor Chnupa; granddaughters, Grace Dermody, Kate Dermody, Erin Dermody, and Riley Chnupa; brother, Colonel (Ret.) Henry M. Dermody, Jr. of Centreville, Md.;  sisters, Joan E. MacGilliviray of Belmont, Mass., Maureen Dermody of Manchester-By-The-Sea, and Marianne Seaver of Gloucester, Mass.;  several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was predeceased by his parents, Henry M. and Evelyn K. Dermody.

Dr. Dermody graduated from St. John’s Preparatory School, Danvers, Mass., and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree from Northeastern University in Boston and a Doctorate of Dental Medicine from the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Dental Medicine in Philadelphia.   He also earned his Certificate of Pediatric Dentistry from Harvard University Children’s Hospital Medical Center.

He served in the U.S. Army Dental Corps where he was instrumental in establishing the first pediatric dental clinic within the United States Army in Fort Stewart, Ga.  Dr. Dermody was a member of the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry, the Florida Dental Association, Southeastern Society of Pediatric Dentistry, and the American College of Dentists, the Treasure Coast Dental Society, and the 100 Club.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. on Feb. 22 at St. Helen Catholic Church. Funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m., Feb. 23 at the church.

Memorial contributions may be made to St. Helen Catholic Church, 2000 20th Street, Vero Beach, FL 32960 or to VNA Hospice, 1110 35th Lane, Vero Beach, FL 32960.

A guestbook may be signed at www.strunkfuneralhome.com. Arrangements by Strunk Funeral Home and Crematory, Vero Beach.

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