Dr. Robert E. Wharen of Lake View died Saturday in the Center for Hospice & Palliative Care in Cheektowaga after a brief illness. He was 78.
Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., he graduated from New Cumberland High School and Dickinson College, in Carlisle, Pa., where he was a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity.
He also graduated from University of Pennsylvania Medical School, where he was a member of the Phi Rho Sigma fraternity, and did his internship at Harrisburg (Pa.) Hospital.
He practiced medicine from 1953 to 1967 in Centre Hall, Pa., and then did a residency in physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Mayo Clinic. He then practiced medicine in Williamsport, Pa., from 1971 to 1982, at the Harmerville Rehabilitation Center in Pittsburgh from 1982 to 1988 and in the James E. Van Zandt Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Altoona, Pa., from 1988 to 1995.
Dr. Wharen was president of Loyalsock Township Kiwanis Club in 1979-80. He was a member of the Pennsylvania Governor's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped in 1978 and was named Physician of the Year in 1978.
He was a member of Grace United Methodist Church in Centre Hall and attended Eden United Methodist Church. He was a biblical scholar and enjoyed traveling.
He and his wife of 53 years, the former Jean Sheats, moved to Lake View in 2004 to be near their daughter, Jeanette Benson of Hamburg.
In addition to his wife and daughter, he is survived by a son, Robert of Jacksonville, Fla.; a brother, Charles of Pottsville, Pa.; and four grandchildren.
A memorial service will be scheduled in Centre Hall. Burial was in Rest Haven Memorial Park, Woolrich, Pa.