ST. LOUIS – A local doctor who drowned in the Ozarks over the weekend is being remembered as a passionate doctor who cared about his patients, and loved fishing and music.

Dr. Richard Brasington worked as a rheumatologist and professor at the Washington University School of Medicine. He was a board member for the Chamber Music Society of St. Louis, and secretary for the Ozark Fly Fishers.

An incident report from the Missouri State Highway Patrol said Brasington was wading in the North Fork River, upstream from the Sunburst landing, some time after 10 a.m. on Sunday when he drowned. He was pronounced dead at 2:15 p.m. by the Ozark County Coroner’s Office. Brasington was 71.

Mark Gordon, executive and artistic director for the Chamber Music Society’s, said Brasington had been on the board for about five years. At one point, Gordon became his patient.

“He actually treated me as a patient. I had some back surgeries. And so I got to know him and he expressed interest in joining our board, because he was so interested in music,” Gordon said.

Gordon said Brasington was a respected physician, and he’ll be missed for his enthusiasm and love of music.

Dr. John Atkinson, a physician and professor at Washington University Medical Center, first met Brasington 25 years ago, when he was recruited to be the director of their training program and teaching students during their fellowships on how to become rheumatologists.

Atkinson said Brasington took care of them, taught, and trained them.

“He was kind of their grandfather, if you will, in many ways,” he said. “And also, if things didn’t go right, he would help them correct it, and teach them. And he did it in a very nice, congenial way.”

Brasington was someone his students looked up to.

“Rick was very good at handling that type of thing and being an example for them,” Atkinson said. “Because what you do when you’re learning about how to take care of patients, you watch how your other doctors do that.”

Those who knew Brasington say he was caring, passionate and will be missed dearly.

“One thing that brings certainly his wife and the rest of us some comfort is that he died way too early but he died doing something that he loved so much,” Gordon said.

A teaching award is already set up in honor of Brasington, and a fellowship in his honor is already in the works.