July 01, 2017

 

 Obituaries

​John C. Thurmon, 1930-2017

Posted June 14, 2017 

Dr. John C. Thurmon, a founder of the American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia, died March 20, 2017, at the age of 87.

Dr. Thurmon
Dr. John C. Thurmon

Born March 4, 1930, in Redford, Missouri, Dr. Thurmon received his DVM degree from the University of Missouri in 1962 and joined the faculty at the University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine that same year. In 1971, he established the college's first anesthesiology section in the Department of Veterinary Clinical Medicine, which he oversaw until he retired as professor emeritus in 1998.

Dr. Peter Constable, dean of Illinois' veterinary college, remarked in a statement on the professor's contributions in his field as well as to the institution. "John had a tremendous impact on veterinary anesthesiology and built an outstanding anesthesiology research and training program at Illinois," Dean Constable said.

During his career, Dr. Thurmon served as the research adviser for more than 25 anesthesia residents and graduate students.

In an obituary about her father, Nancy Schmitt wrote that, between the late 1980s and early 1990s, Dr. Thurmon was a leader in developing several injectable anesthetic protocols, including the "triple drip" combination for large animals.

Dr. Thurmon was chosen by his colleagues in 1971 to look into forming a veterinary anesthesiology specialty. The committee he convened, Schmitt wrote, worked for four years to gain the support of established veterinary specialty organizations that had initially objected to the proposal.

The American College of Veterinary Anesthesiologists was granted preliminary approval by the AVMA in 1975 with Dr. Thurmon serving as the organization's first president. The specialty college has since been renamed the American College of Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia and now has more than 220 members.

Dr. Thurmon was editor-in-chief of the third edition of "Lumb and Jones Veterinary Anesthesia," the gold-standard reference for anesthesia and pain management in animal patients, published in 1996. He was an editor of the fourth edition, published 11 years later.

"Indeed, Dr. Thurmon's contributions to veterinary anesthesiology were both highly consequential and significant," ACVAA President Lesley J. Smith, clinical professor of anesthesiology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Veterinary Medicine, said in a statement.

Dr. Thurmon is survived by his daughter and son-in-law, Nancy and Thomas Schmitt, and three grandchildren. Donations to the ACVAA Foundation in memory of Dr. Thurmon may be sent to Dr. Lynne Kushner, ACVAA Executive Director, 2246 E. Main Road, Apt. D., Portsmouth, RI 02871, or made directly to the ACVAA Foundation.

 

AVMA member
AVMA honor roll member
Nonmember

 
James W. Allison

Dr. Allison (Illinois '55), 87, Charlotte, North Carolina, died April 18, 2017. He practiced mixed animal medicine in Lawrenceville, Illinois, for more than 30 years, retiring in 1985. Dr. Allison's wife, Anita; a son and a daughter; and a grandchild survive him. Memorials, with the memo line of the check notated to the Community Center, may be made to Village of Flat Rock, P.O. Box 81, Flat Rock, IL 62427.

 
Donald L. Crimmins

Dr. Crimmins (Washington State '58), 89, Portland, Oregon, died March 1, 2017. A small animal veterinarian, he founded Rockwood Animal Hospital in Gresham, Oregon, where he practiced for 40 years prior to retirement. Dr. Crimmins was a veteran of the Marine Corps. His wife, Nadine; two daughters and a son; and two grandchildren survive him.

 
Henry F. Doerge

Dr. Doerge (Cornell '57), 83, Middleburgh, New York, died March 26, 2017. In 1961, he moved to Middleburgh, where he practiced mixed animal medicine at Middleburgh Animal Hospital and Clinic for 55 years. Earlier in his career, Dr. Doerge was an instructor at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine and worked at a veterinary clinic on Long Island.

Active in his community, he was a former member of the Middleburgh Volunteer Fire Department and served as treasurer of the Middleburgh Rotary Club for several years. Dr. Doerge is survived by his wife, Anne; five sons and a daughter; 13 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Middleburgh Rotary Club, P.O. Box 1100, Middleburgh, NY 12122, or Middleburgh Reformed Church, P.O. Box 112, Middleburgh, NY 12122.

 
Jeanne W. George

Dr. George (Cornell '71), 71, Davis, California, died April 3, 2017. A diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Pathologists, she was professor emeritus of clinical pathology at the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine since 2008. Following graduation and after earning her doctorate in pathology from the University of Georgia in 1980, Dr. George served on the UGA faculty until 1982. She then moved to UC-Davis, working as a research clinical pathologist at the California Regional Primate Research Center and the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Laboratory. Dr. George joined the faculty of the Department of Clinical Pathology in 1992.

A past president of the American Society of Veterinary Clinical Path­ology, she received the society's Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013. Dr. George is survived by her husband, Dr. Lisle George (Cornell '71), professor emeritus of medicine and epidemiology at UC-Davis; a son; and two grandchildren.

 
George M. Grimes

Dr. Grimes (Texas A&M '43), 96, Palm City, Florida, died April 7, 2017. He owned a small animal practice in Tennessee's Tipton County prior to retirement. Following graduation, Dr. Grimes practiced in Arkansas and Tennessee before joining the Army as a captain. He retired from military service 21 years later as a colonel, earning several honors, including the Army Commendation and National Defense Service medals. Dr. Grimes subsequently earned a master's in biomedical communications from a combined program at Texas A&M University and Tulane University and joined the University of Illinois in Champaign, where he taught for several years. He then moved back to Tennessee, where he established his small animal practice.

Dr. Grimes traveled to Africa and Central America as a veterinary missionary. His three sons, a daughter, and four grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to Poplar Grove Methodist Church, 228 Quito, Drummonds, TN 38023.

 
Donald P. Gustafson

Dr. Gustafson (Ohio State '45), 96, West Lafayette, Indiana, died April 23, 2017. He retired in the late 1980s from the Purdue University College of Veterinary Medicine as Leo Philip Doyle Professor of Virology emeritus. A diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Microbiologists, Dr. Gustafson was known for his expertise in animal viral diseases, including hog cholera, pseudorabies, sheep scrapie, chronic equine enteritis, and Newcastle disease. He was a past chair of the AVMA Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents and a past member of the AVMA Council on Research. Dr. Gustafson also served on the Food and Drug Administration's Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee and on the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Research Resources Committee. In 1970, he received The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine Distinguished Alumnus Award. Dr. Gustafson was also a past recipient of the F.L. Hovde Award for contributions to agriculture in Indiana.

A World War II veteran, he served as a captain in the Army. Active in his community, Dr. Gustafson was a member of the advisory board of the Lafayette Salvation Army and executive board of the Lafayette Rotary Club, and he was active with the Tippecanoe County Historical Society.

He is survived by two sons, three daughters, 13 grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Disabled American Veterans, 575 N. Pennsylvania St. #324, Indianapolis, IN 46204, or Franciscan St. Elizabeth Hospice, 1415 Salem St. #202, Lafayette, IN 47904.

 
Robert V. Johnston

Dr. Johnston (Texas A&M '48), 91, Lake Jackson, Texas, died Feb. 2, 2017. Following graduation, he joined Allied Laboratories, a pharmaceutical and biological company, in Indianapolis. In 1960, the Dow Chemical Company acquired Allied Laboratories, and Dr. Johnston was named director of the company's agricultural laboratories in Midland, Michigan, and Lake Jackson. He served in this capacity until retirement in 1986. Dr. Johnston was a veteran of the Navy Air Corps. His wife, Maxine; a daughter, son, stepson, and stepdaughter; eight grandchildren and a stepgrandchild; and three great-grandchildren and three step-greatgrandchildren survive him.

 
Robert G. La Follette

Dr. La Follette (Iowa State '70), 72, Winterset, Iowa, died May 10, 2017. He worked for the Department of Agriculture in meat inspection for 18 years prior to retirement in 2004. Following graduation, Dr. La Follette served two years in the Army. He subsequently practiced in Dubuque, Iowa, and continued, in Turtle Lake, North Dakota. From 1975-1984, Dr. La Follette owned a practice in Fonda, Iowa. He then moved to Winterset, where he worked with the Madison County Veterinary Clinic prior to joining the USDA. Dr. La Follette was a member of the Iowa VMA for more than 40 years. He was also a member of the Madison County River Alliance and served on the board of directors of the Madison County Foundation for Environmental Education.

He is survived by two sons, two daughters, eight grandchildren, and a great-grandchild. One son, Dr. Ahren La Follette (Iowa State '93), is a veterinarian in Edgerton, Minnesota. Memorials toward the development and construction of a nature center may be made to MCFEE, 2273 Clark Tower Road, Winterset, IA 50273.

 
David Roen

Dr. Roen (Texas A&M '77), 74, Clarkston, Washington, died Feb. 2, 2017. He owned Clarkston Veterinary Clinic, a mixed animal practice, prior to retirement in 2007. Dr. Roen wrote and illustrated a veterinary column for the Lewiston (Idaho) Tribune for more than 30 years. In 2008, the Washington State VMA awarded him the Media Award for his column. Dr. Roen was an Air Force veteran of the Vietnam War. He is survived by his wife, Patricia; a son and a daughter; and six grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Lewis Clark Animal Shelter, 6 Shelter Road, Lewiston, ID 83501, or Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, Donation Processing, The Michael J. Fox Foundation, P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741.

 
Gregg A. Scoggins

Dr. Scoggins (Illinois '90), 53, Ashland, Virginia, died March 26, 2017. Following graduation and after earning his law degree in 1991, also from the University of Illinois, he moved to Ashland, where he worked for McGuire, Woods, Battle & Boothe. In 2000, Dr. Scoggins joined Magna Entertainment Corporation as lead counsel, traveling to MEC-owned racetracks across the United States and Canada. He established his own law practice in 2010, focusing on racing industry, equine, and veterinary law. Dr. Scoggins was a past president of the American Veterinary Medical Law Association. He is survived by his companion, Sue Lilly, and two sons.

Memorials may be made to Cullather Brain Tumor Quality of Life Center, 5875 Bremo Road, St. Mary's Hospital Medical Office Building S. Suite 108, Richmond, VA 23226, or Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center, UVA Health Foundation, P.O. Box 800773, Charlottesville, VA 22908.

 
Cletus M. Vonderwell

Dr. Vonderwell (Ohio State '63), 81, Delphos, Ohio, died April 7, 2017. A mixed animal veterinarian, he owned Vonderwell Clinic in Delphos for more than 40 years, retiring in 2004. Dr. Vonderwell had a special interest in harness horses and took care of the canine units of the Van Vert Sheriff Department. A co-founder and a past president of the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society, he taught veterinary acupuncture worldwide. Dr. Vonderwell's wife, Mary; six sons, a daughter, and two stepsons; and 20 grandchildren and six stepgrandchildren survive him.

 
Morton Wolf

Dr. Wolf (Michigan State '46), 94, Milton, Massachusetts, died Jan. 28, 2017. He practiced in the Boston area for more than 50 years. Dr. Wolf was a past chair of the Massachusetts Board of Registration in Veterinary Medicine and a past president of the New England and Massachusetts VMAs, receiving the 1984 MVMA Distinguished Service Award. He volunteered with the Milton Animal Shelter, served on the Milton Board of Health, and was a member of the Rotary Club and Kiwanis International.

Dr. Milton was a veteran of the Army Veterinary Corps. His three daughters, a son, 10 grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to Congregation Beth Shalom of the Blue Hills, 18 Shoolman Way, Milton, MA 02186, or Milton Animal Shelter, 181 Governor Stoughton Lane, Milton, MA 02186.

 
Wilfred C. Wood

Dr. Wood (Ohio State '56), 85, Lorain, Ohio, died Feb. 12, 2017. Following graduation, he served two years as a captain in the Army Air Force. Dr. Wood then bought Lorain Animal Clinic, where he practiced small animal medicine until 1996, when his son, Dr. Thomas Wood (Ohio State '87), took over the practice. He served on the Lorain City School Board and was a member of the Lorain Rotary Club, Masonic Lodge, and Elks Club. Dr. Wood is survived by three daughters, two sons, nine grandchildren, and a great-grandchild. Memorials may be made to the Wood Foundation, 4205 Oberlin Ave., Lorain, OH 44053.

 

Obituary notifications

Please report the death of a veterinarian promptly to the JAVMA News staff via a toll-free phone call to 800-248-2862, ext. 6754; email to news@avma.org; or fax to 847-925-9329. For an obituary to be published, JAVMA must be notified within six months of the date of death.

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