Oral surgeon remembered for intelligence, kindness

A local oral surgeon is being remembered as an intelligent, kind and generous man.

Dr. George A. Nohaile, 85, a resident of the Presbyterian Village at Hollidaysburg, formerly of Altoona, died Monday at UPMC Altoona.

Nohaile retired as a self-employed oral surgeon for Nohaile Oral Surgery Clinic after 50 years of service.

He was a member of the medical staff at UPMC Altoona and its predecessors since 1961 and during his tenure, served as chairman of the dentistry and oral surgery department.

“He was a friendly, outgoing person; he was always willing to discuss a variety of topics that included the world situation and investments. He was part of the old guard at the Altoona Hospital and to my knowledge, served the public well.” said Dr. George Zlupko, owner of Lung Disease Center of Central Pennsylvania.

Dr. J. Richard Pfeffer said he first met Nohaile when he came to town in 1979.

“He was extremely bright. I had friends who were physicians who took continuing education courses with him, and they said he was the smartest guy in the room,” said Pfeffer, an Altoona orthodontist.

Nohaile was a very good oral surgeon, Pfeffer said.

“He always looked at the whole picture. He was very good at what he did. In his day, he was a force in the local dental community. He practiced until late in his life. He knew his limitations as he grew older and didn’t tackle the bigger projects. He was a very good oral surgeon and a very bright guy,” Pfeffer said.

Father Stephen Lourie, former pastor at St. George Orthodox Church, Altoona, said Nohaile was a generous man.

“He would let people come in and help them; he knew they couldn’t afford to pay. He did a lot of free work to help people after he retired. I have very fond memories of him,” said Lourie, now of Sarasota, Fla.

Lourie also said Nohaile was kind to him and had a great sense of humor.

“When my family moved to Altoona, he was very hospitable to me. He was so proud of his town. He introduced himself to me as Dr. Nohaile — no rainy, no snowy, no haily,” Lourie said.

Nohaile was a very religious man as well.

“He was a very faithful parishioner and loved the Lord. He loved his church, he loved his town and he was a good doctor,” Lourie said.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. today at St. George Orthodox Church, Altoona, Father Isaac Danevicius officiating, Interment will be at Alto-Reste Cemetery.

Mirror Staff Writer Walt Frank is at 946-7467.