Young Moo Kang, M.D.
Young Moo Kang, M.D.
Young Moo Kang, M.D., passed away peacefully in his hometown of West Plains, Missouri, on March 21, 2023.
Young Kang was born on Oct. 16, 1937 in a rural area just outside of Seoul, South Korea. His mother, an organist for the Korean Methodist Church, brought him to the Christian faith at an early age, and his belief in God never wavered. Young dreamed of becoming a physician, and he eventually graduated from Seoul National University School of Medicine in 1962. After three years of service as a physician in the South Korean armed forces, he immigrated to the United States for medical residency training.
Dr. Kang quickly fell in love with his new country, and America’s values soon became his own. Only thirteen years of age when the Korean War started, he had seen firsthand the dangers of communism. He was deeply grateful for American sacrifices for South Korean freedom and democracy. He eventually became a proud U.S. citizen in 1976, confirming what he already knew in his heart: that he was American. Following residency training in New York and St. Louis, Young moved to West Plains and established the family practice that he devoted himself to for forty years. He had always appreciated classical and sacred music, so Young loved to play the organ when not taking care of patients. But his life truly began when he met Soon Kim. He had finally found someone to sing with and to love. They were married at First United Methodist Church of West Plains in 1978. The subsequent birth of sons David and Stephen made his life complete.
Young had two primary purposes in his life: family and medicine. He loved being a father and raising his two sons. He seemed to always have his faithful camcorder, ready to document their every move. The best part of his day was taking David and Stephen to the local Ramada Inn for a coffee and Sprite. He cherished taking his family on fishing trips to Tecumseh or Rock Bridge. Family canoe trips from Twin Bridges to Hammonds Mill were especially delightful for him. Young was a “country boy” at heart, and in the Ozarks had found his true home. A member of First United Methodist Church, Young enjoyed singing with Soon in the Chancel Choir, and often practiced at home with recordings to make sure he had each note just right.
As a family doctor, it was his true honor to serve the West Plains community for forty years. Sick patients could call him at home, and he would go into the office to help them at all hours of the night. He was always on call, so never took a vacation longer than a weekend in his career. But a quick getaway to Springfield or Branson with coverage from a gracious physician colleague was all he needed to make him happy, as long as he was with family. Caring for others, whether family members or patients, brought him joy throughout his entire life.
He is survived by wife Soon; children David and Kathryn Kang, and Stephen Kang and Kimberly Guo; grandchildren James, Emily, and Benjamin; siblings Young Seok Kang and Young Sun Kim; and mother-in-law Soon D. Choi.
Dr. Kang is preceded in death by his parents Hoon Jo Kang and Young Soon Kim; special West Plains parents Clifford and Martha Garrett; and father-in-law Han Myung Kim.
A private family gathering to celebrate Dr. Kang’s life is planned.
Dustin W Mahan
March 30, 2023 @ 12:16 pm
Kang and family, I’m sorry for the loss of your loved one.
March 30, 2023 @ 1:12 pm
We are so sad to hear of Dr. Kang’s passing. He was our family Dr. When we lived in West Plains. He was a wonderful Doctor and a good friend to our whole family. After we moved away, we often missed him being our Doctor. We had so much respect for him in all ways. Our prayers go out to Soon, David and Steven and all the family at this difficult time. Dr. Kang was a true patriot and a sincere Christian.
March 30, 2023 @ 1:38 pm
I am so sorry for the loss of Dr. Kang. He was such a kind man. Prayers for all of the family and friends. I know he will be missed by so many.
March 30, 2023 @ 2:34 pm
Mrs. Kang and family, we are so sorry to hear of Dr. Kang’s passing. He was so kind and always available when we needed him, no matter the day or time. We will always think very highly of him. Prayers for all of you during this time.
Teresa eldringhoff romans
March 30, 2023 @ 3:36 pm
Soon and family, please accept my sincere condolences.
March 31, 2023 @ 6:51 am
Dr. Kang was very special to our family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Mrs. Kang and his family.
March 30, 2023 @ 5:14 pm
Mrs. Soon Kang and Kang Families,
My parents, Norris/Ivene Cozort, send their Deepest Sympathies to you and your family on the passing of Dr. Kang. He took very care of my Dad when he cut his finger off and sent my parents onto Springfield knowing that is where he needed further intricate treatment which wasn’t available here at the time. Prayers of comfort, encouragement, strength, and peace for all of you daily and may God bless all of you.
In Christian Love,
Rob & Debbie Stauffer
March 30, 2023 @ 5:42 pm
Soon, David, & Stephen, We are so sorry for the loss of Dr. Kang. He was a wonderful man & a very dedicated doctor. Rob always enjoyed their political discussions when he had his weekly allergy shots. The obituary described him beautifully, always attending school events & recording the boys’ accomplishments! We loved it when he & Soon were in the church choir. He made a huge difference in our community. Love, Rob & Debbie Stauffer
Melinda (Burgess) King
March 30, 2023 @ 7:47 pm
This man leaves a legacy no one will ever top. Well respected in the Healthcare community and by the patients he served. It was an honor to work with him.
Can you imagine his Heavenly reunion!!!
May your memories bring you peace until reunited in Heaven.
March 30, 2023 @ 11:22 pm
Stephen, I’m so sorry to learn of your dad’s passing. I don’t know your relationship with your dad, but if you were close like I was with my dad.. time does help. I will always regard you as a friend. I miss you man.
March 31, 2023 @ 6:20 am
I’m sad to hear of this passing, so sorry! Dr. Kang was our family doctor when we moved to WP in 1994, he was hard man to replace and the only one who could take your blood and not feel it. Always caring with a funny undertone. You are missed, RIP.
March 31, 2023 @ 6:26 am
Soon and family, so sorry for your loss. We are all lucky you made West Plains your home. Prayers for peace.
March 31, 2023 @ 8:24 am
I am so sorry to hear of Dr. Kang’s passing, and am praying for peace and comfort for all his loved ones.
March 31, 2023 @ 8:55 am
I am so sorry to hear of Dr. Kang’s passing. He was my doctor when I was in West Plains. Always so dedicated and caring, he was the best. My thoughts and prayers are with the family.
March 31, 2023 @ 10:44 am
Mrs. Kang and family, I am so sorry for your loss. Dr. Kang was a wonderful doctor as well as a wonderful person. My mother Bonita and I thought the world of him, and still think the world of you too. We think of you often, and we truly miss you and Dr. Kang. We will be bringing you up in prayer to help you get through this. May God grant you the grace that only He can give during this difficult time.
March 31, 2023 @ 10:57 am
Stephen and Family:
I’m sorry to hear of the loss of your father. Prayers for you and your family in this difficult time!
Mike & Becky Lott
March 31, 2023 @ 4:53 pm
Mrs. Kang, David. & Stephen,
Dr. Kang was very much of a family man. I remember in elementary that he was there for all occasions & a very concerned Dad & doctor. He was so proud of you boys. When he talked about you, he beamed. Same for you , Mrs. Kang, he loved you, sparkled when you played or sang. He will greatly missed! Condolences & God’s blessings!
Mike & Becky Lott
March 31, 2023 @ 6:06 pm
Dear Kang Family he was awesome doctor sorry to hear has passed away,
Alvin & Gloria Collins
March 31, 2023 @ 6:22 pm
Soon and family we send our prayers for you and your family. Dr. Kang was our family physician and he truly cared for his patients. He will be greatly missed in our community!
Alvin & Gloria Collins
March 31, 2023 @ 7:50 pm
So sorry for your loss. Prayers during this time. I helped to care for his patients. While they were in the hospital. He was a kind man.
March 31, 2023 @ 9:32 pm
Dr.Kang was a great man,doctor and friend to the Melvin family. He will be missed. We pray for peace for the family.
March 31, 2023 @ 10:11 pm
Mrs.Kang, Stephen and David I am so sorry to learn of Dr. Kang’s passing. He was a very kind and compassionate, doctor. He did love his family very much.. Our community was fortunate to have him as our physician. May you find peace and comfort in the days ahead. God bless you!
April 1, 2023 @ 3:47 pm
Condolences to the Kang family. Doctor Kang’s patients all had names never numbers and he knew each name. He was a credit to his profession, his family, and his community. He will be missed. Via con Dios my friend
David and Katie Black
Steve & Dortha Simpson
April 1, 2023 @ 3:50 pm
Mrs. Kang, David and Stephen. We are so sorry for the loss of Dr. Kang. Prayers for peace and comfort.
April 1, 2023 @ 10:15 pm
Dr. Kang was indeed a blessing to our community and nation. He was the epitome of a good man. I am thankful to have known him, and thankful for his legacy. He served and helped many here.
April 2, 2023 @ 8:26 am
So sorry for your loss.He was my doctor from 1985 till he retired.Best I have had.He really cared for you. Loved them both.
April 2, 2023 @ 1:39 pm
Our prayers go out to Dr. Kang’s wife and family, they both were such a blessing to our family and Mr. and Mrs. Kang always went out of their way to help everyone. We have missed you all dearly since his retirement and know that although it’s a tragic time, God will get you through this and Dr. Kang is definitely at peace. Thank you so much.
Don & Elaine Vaughan
April 4, 2023 @ 1:28 am
I was 9 years old when Dr. Kang literally saved my life. I ran a fever of 104 for over a week. He was at his literal end and told my mother that the only thing he knew to do was send me to the St. Louis children’s hospital. However, he mixed up something and told my mother to give it to me every 6 hours around the clock. And if in 24 hours my fever didn’t break he was sending me via ambulance to St. Louis. My mother said at hour 19 my fever broke and she called him at 230 AM and told him that I was sweating and hungry. He told her to push fluids and feed me. He literally saved my life. He was an AMAZING doctor. I’m so sorry for the loss of your loved one. May God grant you peace in this difficult time. Just know that as outstanding as he was, his care for his patients left an indelible mark on their lives and he’ll never be forgotten. I know that I’ll never forget him.
Soon, David, and Stephen
April 5, 2023 @ 10:48 pm
Dear West Plains,
These comments have touched us deeply, and we wish we could respond to each post individually. We are so grateful for the love and support from the community after Dr. Kang’s passing. Every kind word celebrating his life and legacy has brought us comfort in a sad time. We read and cherish every word honoring his memory.
Soon, David, and Stephen Kang