Posted Dec. 13, 2012
AVMA honor roll member
Robert K. Anderson
Dr. Anderson (COL ’44), 90, Falcon Heights, Minn., died Oct. 19, 2012. One of the foremost animal behaviorists in the world, he was the founder and chairman emeritus of the Animal Behavior Resources Institute, professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine, and co-inventor of the Gentle Leader Headcollar and Easy Walk Harness. Following graduation, Dr. Anderson served in the Navy. After World War II, he joined the city of Denver’s Department of Health and Hospitals as director of the veterinary public health program. In 1950, Dr. Anderson earned his master’s in public health from the University of Michigan. He then returned to Denver, and as chief of the city’s veterinary public health services, he established the first rabies-control program, which became the model for similar programs in the United States and abroad.
Dr. Anderson joined the faculty of the University of Minnesota in 1956. During his tenure, he served as a professor of veterinary medicine and public health, was the first director of the veterinary public health program in the School of Public Health, served as associate dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine for six years, and co-founded and directed the Center to Study Human-Animal Relationships and Environment. Dr. Anderson also conducted research on brucellosis, helping to distinguish between vaccinal antibodies and antibodies due to infection. A member of the National Brucellosis Technical Commission, his work in brucellosis assisted the Department of Agriculture in differentiating between infected animals and those that had been vaccinated.
Dr. Anderson was a charter diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists and a distinguished diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. He helped establish what is now known as Pet Partners, an organization that enlists therapy, service, and companion animals to improve human health. Dr. Anderson founded the Animal Behavior Resources Institute in 2006, using Internet videos and interviews to help professionals and clients solve animal behavioral problems. He was a past director of the American Humane Association and founded the veterinary public health section of the American Public Health Association. Dr. Anderson was a past member of the AVMA Council on Education, AVMA Committee on the Human-Animal Bond, and AVMA Council on Public Health and Regulatory Veterinary Medicine.
He was named Minnesota Veterinarian of the Year in 1977 and received the Award of Recognition from the Association of Teachers of Veterinary Public Health and Preventive Medicine in 1982. In 1987, Dr. Anderson was the second recipient of the Bustad Companion Animal Veterinarian Award. The ATVPHPM honored Dr. Anderson with the Michael J. McCulloch Award for contributions in research, teaching, and service related to the human-animal bond in 1992. He received the MVMA Distinguished Service Award in 1998 and the AHA Waco F. Childers Award for his contributions to humane ideals in 2000. The ACVB presented the R.K. Anderson Award to a resident in an approved behavior program at its 2005 annual meeting, and the University of Minnesota honored him on its Wall of Discovery with the display of the Gentle Leader Headcollar in 2006. In 2007, the Morris Animal Foundation established the R.K. Anderson Endowment Fund for Research on Improving the Behavior of Companion Animals.
Dr. Anderson is survived by his longtime companion, Marlys Giesecke, and three sons.
Melvin R. Calliham
Dr. Calliham (TEX ’49), 92, Bryan, Texas, died Aug. 19, 2012. He was professor emeritus of veterinary large animal medicine and surgery at the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences since 1984 and former head of the college’s Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery. Following graduation, Dr. Calliham was briefly in mixed animal practice before joining the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station as an associate veterinarian and project manager at Pan Tech Research Farms near Amarillo. In 1952, he became head of the Department of Agriculture at West Texas State College. Dr. Calliham was named head of TAMU-CVM’s Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery in 1958. He also served as director of the university’s Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital.
Dr. Calliham was a past president of the Panhandle and Brazos Valley VMAs; served on the board of directors of the Texas VMA; was a member of the American Association of Veterinary Clinicians, American Society of Animal Science, and American Animal Hospital Association; and served as executive secretary of the American Beef Cattle Performance Registry Association. He was active with the 4-H Club and the National FFA Organization and was a member of the Lions and Rotary clubs. Dr. Calliham served in the Army Air Corps from 1941-1946, attaining the rank of major. His wife, Frances; three daughters; and a son survive him. Memorials toward a veterinary medical scholarship fund may be made to the Texas A&M Foundation, College of Veterinary Medicine, Office of the Dean, 4461 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843.
Melissa A. De Witt-Larson
Dr. De Witt-Larson (WIS ’98), 42, Plantation, Fla., died Oct. 15, 2012. She practiced small and exotic animal medicine in the Fort Lauderdale area of Florida. Dr. De Witt-Larson also served as a relief veterinarian. Her husband, Dylan Larson, survives her. Memorials may be made to Sawgrass Nature Center & Wildlife Hospital, 3000 Sportsplex Drive, Coral Springs, FL 33065.
Roger P. Eagle
Dr. Eagle (COL ’02). 42, Tucson, Ariz., died Oct. 14, 2012. A small animal practitioner, he owned Ina Road Animal Hospital in Tucson. Dr. Eagle is survived by his wife, Kynta, and a daughter. Memorials may be made to the Humane Society of Southern Arizona, 3450 N. Kelvin Blvd., Tucson, AZ 85716.
G. Allen Haws
Dr. Haws (UP ’52), 85, Shippenville, Pa., died Sept. 16, 2012. Prior to retirement in 2002, he worked for the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Earlier in his career, Dr. Haws owned a practice in Clarion, Pa., for 25 years, focusing on large animal medicine. He was a veteran of the Navy, serving from 1944-1946 in the Pacific theater. Dr. Haws’ five sons and two daughters survive him. Memorials may be made to Clarion Pups, P.O. Box 480, Clarion, PA 16214.
Max T. Mills
Dr. Mills (MID ’42), 95, Sturbridge, Mass., died Sept. 15, 2012. He owned a small animal hospital in Charlton, Mass., where he practiced for 50 years prior to retirement. Dr. Mills also operated an equine practice in Southbridge, Mass., from the late 1960s into the 1980s. Following graduation, he served as an Army medic in Iran during World War II and owned a practice in Southbridge. In retirement, Dr. Mills authored the book “A New England Country Veterinarian: Memories and Musings.” He is survived by his wife, Lucille; a son; three daughters; two stepsons; and a stepdaughter. Memorials may be made to Capen Hill Nature Sanctuary, 56 Capen Road, Charlton, MA 01507; Friends of Charlton Animal Shelter, P.O. Box 322, Charlton, MA 01507; or Federated Church of Sturbridge and Fiskdale, 8 Maple St., Sturbridge, MA 01566.
Donald J. Tesdall
Dr. Tesdall (ISU ’62), 73, Des Moines, Iowa, died Oct. 2, 2012. Following his graduation from the Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine in 1962, he continued his education at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. After graduating in 1966, Dr. Tesdall practiced at the East Des Moines Family Care Center prior to retirement in 2005. He was also a member of the teaching faculty at the Iowa Lutheran Family Practice Residency Program, a program he helped establish in 1974. Dr. Tesdall was a veteran of the Iowa Army National Guard and was named state surgeon in 1989. He retired as a brigadier general in 1998.
Dr. Tesdall’s wife, Mary Jane; two sons; and two daughters survive him. Memorials toward a scholarship in Dr. Tesdall’s name may be made to Iowa Academy of Family Physicians Foundation, 100 E. Grand, Suite 170, Des Moines, IA 50309.
Harold M. Zweighaft
Dr. Zweighaft (COR ’56), 81, New York, died Oct. 18, 2012. A past chairman of the AVMA Executive Board and AVMA Judicial Council, he owned a small animal practice in New York at the time of his death. Dr. Zweighaft began his career working for a small animal practice in New York. From 1958-1984, he served as director of the Tri Boro Animal Hospital in the Bronx, N.Y. Dr. Zweighaft began directing the West Parc Veterinary Clinic in New York in 1981, remaining there until retirement in 2002. He came out of retirement in 2007 to resume small animal practice in New York.
Dr. Zweighaft served on the New York State Board for Veterinary Medicine from 1977-1986 and was appointed to the National Board of Veterinary Medical Examiners in 1978. From 1975-1992, he served as New York’s delegate to the AVMA House of Delegates, and, from 1989-1992, he was a member of the AVMA House Advisory Committee. Dr. Zweighaft was the District I representative on the AVMA Executive Board from 1992-1998, chairing the board from 1997-1998. He also served on the Educational Commission for Foreign Veterinary Graduates from 1992-1998. He was a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council at Cornell University from 1990-2012. From 1999-2005, Dr. Zweighaft served on the AVMA Judicial Council, chairing it in 2002. He was a member of the New York State VMS Executive Board from 1971-1992 and was a past president of the VMA of New York City.
Dr. Zweighaft consulted for several organizations, including the Institute for the Study of Human-Animal Relationships, Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council, New York State Education Department, and New York City Board of Education. In 1978, Dr. Zweighaft received the NYSVMS Merit Award and the VMANYC Outstanding Service Award. He was named VMANYC Veterinarian of the Year in 1988; received life membership status with the NYSVMS in 1993; and was named NYSVMS Veterinarian of the Year in 1997. In 2000, Dr. Zweighaft received the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine’s Daniel Elmer Salmon Award for representing the college with distinction. That same year, he was the recipient of the Baker Institute’s Founders Award. In 2002, Cornell’s veterinary college dedicated a room in the Companion Animal Hospital to Dr. Zweighaft, naming it The Harold M. Zweighaft Examination Room for Oncology.
Dr. Zweighaft is survived by his wife, Dorothy; two sons; and a daughter. Memorials may be made to the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, Box 39, Ithaca, NY 14853.