Years later, a chiropractor came to the small town to help a local woman.Wilson was impressed by the well-spoken, welldressed man.His dream to become a physician was crystallized.Wilson decided to leave the family farm at age 15, and moved to Memphis to live with his brother.
In 1951,Wilson moved to California, went to work at a theater, and started attending San Bernardino High School. Dr.Wilson remembers going to San Bernardino County Hospital and talking to the director of nurses about getting a job.“She said I was too young, and she couldn’t hire me until I was 18,” recalls Dr.Wilson.“She was a very nice lady, and told me about a civil service examination for an orderly. She even got me some books to help me study.” The test was offered December 10, one day after Wilson’s 18th birthday.He passed the test, went to the hospital with his test results…and was hired.
Intent on his dream of becoming a physician,Wilson continued his education, attending San Bernardino Valley College, and then La Sierra University, the undergraduate school for Loma Linda University at that time.Working nights as an orderly so he would have a chance to study,Wilson transferred from San Bernardino County Hospital to Riverside County Hospital, attended school during the day, and ultimately graduated from Loma Linda University School of Medicine.
Dr.Wilson spent 27 years as a general practice physician in Upland where he developed the IPSA Medical Group Corporation.“We started out with one employee and a laptop computer,”muses Dr.Wilson.“When the company sold in 1997, we had over 65,000 patients.”
When IPSA sold,Dr.Wilson realized, after about five months, that retirement wasn’t going to be a part of his life.He saw an advertisement for a job at an Eisenhower Medical Center facility in Sun City.“We developed a huge practice,” shares Dr.Wilson,“and I had thoughts of starting another medical group.”
After losing his first wife in 1997, life brought Dr.Wilson an unexpected gift.
Wilson met a lady who came to work for him.“I didn’t pay much attention at first,” says Dr.Wilson,“but found myself acting like a school boy again and asked her to marry me.” The woman was Claudia, his wife and current head of his business operations.
The next leap they took together.“I wanted a one-doctor office,” shares Dr. Wilson.“Claudia went to talk to Eisenhower, and before I knew it, I was set up. I have never been happier.”
Dr.Wilson is proud to be part of the lives of Claudia’s children, 17-year-old Brianna (who is headed to La Sierra University to pursue a degree in medicine) and 13-year-old Michael.
Dr.Wilson, who currently serves as Section Chief of Family Medicine, likes spending time with his patients talking about their health, preventive medicine and encouraging them to exercise.He practices what he preaches…and spends one hour a day at the gym.