Longtime Mississippi physician, state board of health member dies of COVID-19

Published 9:27 am Wednesday, January 13, 2021

A longtime Mississippi physician and member of the Mississippi State Board of Health died Saturday due to complications of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Dr. Ed Dalton Barham, of Clinton, MS, died at the age of 79.

Dr. Barham, known by his friends as Tad or Taddy, spent his youth in Belzoni, Mississippi. Barham always said Belzoni was the greatest place in the world in which to grow up. He cherished his time spent there and the many friends he made in the “heart of the Delta.”

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Barham graduated from Mississippi College in three years and entered George Washington School of Medicine in 1962. After receiving his medical degree, he entered the U.S. Army and trained in the specialty of radiology at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. He spent a total of 8 years at Walter Reed teaching and practicing radiology. He resigned his regular Army commission in 1974, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

Barham returned to Jackson, Mississippi, in 1975 to practice radiology. During his career, he served as Chief of Radiology at Doctor’s Hospital, the V.A. Medical Center, River Oaks Hospital, and Woman’s Hospital. He also served as Assistant Clinical Professor of Radiology at UMMC and served on the Board of Trustees of River Oaks Hospital.

Barham practiced the majority of his professional life until the time of his death – over 35 years – at Woman’s Hospital. He considered Woman’s Hospital his second home, and his relationships with its doctors, employees, administrators, and patients were a great joy to him. At the time of his death, he was serving as the Chief Medical Officer and Chairman of the Board of Woman’s Hospital.

Dr. Barham was selected to receive the honorary Fellow of The American College of Radiology, an honor reserved for only 10-15% of all practicing radiologists in the U.S. He belonged to many professional organizations, including the American Medical Association, the MS Medical Association, the MS Radiology Society (Past President), and the Society of Breast Imaging.

Governor Phil Bryant appointed Dr. Barham to the Mississippi State Board of Health in 2012, where he was elected as Board Chairman in 2017. He continued to serve on the Board of Health until his death. He felt it was a privilege and an honor to serve in a leadership position to help promote public health in Mississippi.

Mississippi State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs said Barham was “a fabulous doctor, friend and member of the Board of Health.”

Barham is survived by his daughter, Tracey Barham; son, Dr. Tad (Tammy) Barham, Jr.; son, Dr. Brooks (Lori) Barham; grandchildren, Emma Barham and Lauren Barham; grandchildren, Avery Barham, Alex Barham, Ainsley Barham, and their mother, Karma Barham (all children and grandchildren of Madison, MS). He is also survived by his niece and nephews, Dr. Barry (Ellen) McCay; Kim McCay Simmons; and Scott McCay.

He was preceded in death by his wife of 54 years, Judy Barham; his parents, Marvin and Ouida Barham; and his sister, Bonnie McCay, and brother-in-law, Dr. Scott McCay. The family wishes to express their gratitude to Cindy Dishongh for her love and care.

A private family graveside service will be held in Belzoni. Due to Covid-19 concerns, a Celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Memories and condolences may be shared with the family through Parkway Funeral Home, 1161 Highland Colony Pkwy, Ridgeland, MS 39157. Memorial donations may be made to the MS Baptist Children’s Village or St. Jude.