Rex Gene Hardman, D.O., FACOS, ACHP, age 81 years, of Jefferson City, Mo., passed away Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at his home.

He was born on November 14, 1938 in Glenwood, the son of Carl Rufus and Nella (Swan) Hardman. He was married on May 9, 1981 in Kirksville, Mo. to Jodi Kay Hopkins who survives in the home.

Rex was a 1957 graduate of Princeton High School in Princeton, Mo. and a 1960 graduate of the Kirksville State Teachers College, currently known as Truman State University. In 1964, he earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine Degree from the world’s first osteopathic medical school, the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine, currently known as A.T. Still University. He completed his internship and residency at Laughlin Hospital and Kirksville Osteopathic Hospital.

Rex practiced as a general surgeon for 28 of his total 42 years in the field of medicine. He owned Hardman Medical Services and performed countless surgeries through Grim-Smith Hospital in Kirksville, Mo., which was purchased in 1973 by him and four other osteopathic physicians.

Rex retired in 1996 and endured nine years of retirement in Colorado and Florida. After failing retirement, in 2005 he accepted a position as Medical Director with Correctional Medical Services now known as Corizon Medical Services in Jefferson City, Mo. providing medical care at Jefferson City Correctional Center, Algoa Correctional Center, and Tipton Correctional Center. Rex was a thorough, trustworthy, and dependable surgeon and was well known for his outstanding surgical abilities. He held high standards and was well received and respected among his colleagues and associates. Rex left a lasting impression with all with whom he interacted.

Rex was a lifetime member of the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons (ACOS), certified in the 70s and becoming a fellow in 1987. He was a member of the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) since 2008, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of health care in jails, prisons and juvenile confinement facilities. He also was very proud to have received his certification in correctional health professionals (CCHP) through their national organization, Academy of Correctional Health Professionals (ACHP).  

Rex was a man of faith and his life was lived to help others. In addition to his career in the United States, his medical knowledge and skill was utilized on mission trips to India and Honduras. Rex enjoyed learning new things and even learned to snow ski with his son, Karl, in the 70s, an activity he enjoyed as recently as February of this year. He and Jodi learned to fly in 1984 owning planes until 1987 but never losing the desire to fly. He also loved to play cards — gin was the game of choice but bridge was a close second; and you never wanted to play Monopoly with him, just ask Jodi. To Rex, a day on the golf course was a social event and a lesson in perseverance. He was happy as long as he didn’t have idle hands. Whether it was gardening, manicuring his lawn, hunting or fishing, Rex found something to occupy his time. Though he maintained a busy lifestyle, Rex was always able to slow down long enough to appreciate things like the beauty of the leaves changing in the fall, the tulips and the daffodils in the spring, feeding his birds, and the importance of the love of family and friends. Rex cherished his family. He was proud of his children and grandchildren and did his very best to be in attendance for a lot of events in which they participated. He will be remembered for being a loving, supportive and encouraging husband, father, grandfather, surgeon, and friend.

Survivors include: his wife of 38 years, Jodi Hardman; two sons, Karl (Debbie) Hardman of Columbia, Mo. and Luke (Jaimie) Hardman of Los Angeles, Calif.; daughter-in-law, Anita Hardman Herman, Holiday, Fla.; one sister, Phyllis Moore of Osage Beach, Mo.; five grandchildren, Kathi (Garon) Drake of Colorado Springs, Colo., Alex Hardman of St Petersburg, Fla., Kara (Michael McPherson) Hardman of Shawnee Mission, Kan., Meghan Hardman of Atlanta, Ga., and Andrew (Molli) Hardman of Johnstown, Colo.; three great grandchildren, Alexis Drake, Ava Drake, Garon Bradlee Drake and Ace McPherson; nephew, Dr. David (Nichole) Moore and Kate of Fort Wayne, Ind.; niece, Dr. Angela (Russ) Clay, Austin and Addyson of Osage Beach, Mo.; father and mother-in-law, Russell and Dorothy Hopkins of Bloomfield; brother in laws, Dave (Becky) Hopkins of Bloomfield and Chris (Lindsay) Hopkins of Pella; nieces and nephews-in-law, and his fur babies, Kassie, Otis, and Tess.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two sons, Brad Hardman and Tim Hardman; two brothers, Wayne Hardman and Wendel Hardman; one grandson, Kevin Hardman; and one brother-in-law, King Moore.

Visitation was held from 12:30 p.m. until 2 p.m. Sunday, November 24, at the First Presbyterian Church in Jefferson City, Mo.

A memorial service was conducted immediately following the visitation at 2 p.m. with the Reverend Angela Madden and the Reverend David Henry officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions are suggested to the First Presbyterian Church.          

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Freeman Mortuary.

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