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Doc Puumala, Cloquet's old-school doctor, dies at 88

With the passing of "Doc Puumala" last weekend, Cloquet lost its last country doctor, a man who made house calls and didn't worry how long an appointment lasted.

Ricard Reino Puumala died Saturday, Aug. 19, at the age of 88. At one time, he and his wife, Barbara, worked at the family clinic with both of his parents, Reino and Marie Bepko Puumala.

His daughter, Dr. Vicky Heren, said Ricard (and both his parents) were general practice physicians. They did it all: pinning hips, removing gallbladders, performing appendectomies and delivering hundreds of babies.

"That era of physicians, that's just...