March 01, 2018



Posted Feb. 14, 2018
AVMA member
AVMA honor roll member
William E. Babcock

Dr. Babcock (Washington State '45), 95, Terre Haute, Indiana, died Oct. 17, 2017. He was director of animal health research at Pfizer Animal Health in Terre Haute prior to retirement in 1988. Following graduation, Dr. Babcock worked briefly in the poultry disease laboratory at Oregon State University. He subsequently established a practice in Buhl, Idaho. From 1946-48, Dr. Babcock served in the Army Veterinary Corps, attaining the rank of captain. He then served as an associate professor at the Oregon State College of Veterinary Medicine before joining Pfizer in 1963. Dr. Babcock's wife, Nina; two sons and two daughters; 13 grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren survive him.

John H. Baldwin

Dr. Baldwin (Cornell '52), 92, Greene, New York, died July 29, 2017. He served as supervisor of veterinary medicine for the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets for 22 years prior to retirement in 1983. Prior to that, Dr. Baldwin was in private practice for 10 years. He served in the Army during World War II and was a past commander of the American Legion in New York state's Herkimer County. Dr. Baldwin's wife, Bettie; two daughters and a son; six grandchildren; and a great-grandchild survive him. Memorials may be made to First United Methodist Church, 32 S. Chenango St., Greene, NY 13778.

Stephen W. Barsanti

Dr. Barsanti (Pennsylvania '80), 67, Alton, New Hampshire, died Oct. 18, 2017. A mixed animal veterinarian, he owned Alton Veterinary Clinic from 1982-2012. Prior to that, Dr. Barsanti conducted research at Harvard University. His wife, Karen; a son, daughter, stepdaughter, and two stepsons; five grandchildren; his parents; and two brothers and a sister survive him. Memorials may be made to the New Hampshire Humane Society, 305 Meredith Center Road, Laconia, NH 03246,; or Wildlife Heritage Foundation of New Hampshire, P.O. Box 3993, Concord, NH 03302,

Harold E. Bonertz

Dr. Bonertz (Colorado State '62), 89, Littleton, Colorado, died Oct. 31, 2017. He owned Marshall Road Animal Clinic in Boulder, Colorado, where he practiced small animal medicine until retirement in 1991. Dr. Bonertz served on the board of directors of the Boulder County Humane Society and was a member of the American Animal Hospital Association. He is survived by his wife, Dori; a daughter and two sons; three grandchildren; and six sisters and two brothers. Memorials may be made to Alzheimer's Association of Colorado, 455 Sherman St., Suite 500, Denver, CO 80203,; or Colorado State Foundation (with the memo line of the check notated to DVM Class of 1962 Scholarship/Dr. Bonertz), CSU CVMBS Advancement Office, 2680 Campus Delivery, Fort Collins, CO 80523, (select "include tribute" on second page).

Edwin S. Brokken Jr.

Dr. Brokken (Minnesota '63), 82, Colts Neck, New Jersey, died Oct. 9, 2017. He was vice president of research in the Animal Health Division at Schering-Plough Corp. in Rahway, New Jersey, for 10 years prior to retirement in 1997. Dr. Brokken began his career practicing large animal medicine in Preston, Minnesota. He then taught in the large animal clinic at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Brokken subsequently practiced small animal medicine in Wayzata, Minnesota. In 1969, he joined Merck & Co. Inc. as director of animal research in Mexico, Missouri. Dr. Brokken later served the company as senior director of animal research and development in Rahway. During his career with Merck, his research included participation in the development of the antiparasitic drug ivermectin.

Dr. Brokken was a veteran of the Navy. He is survived by his wife, Patricia; five children; three brothers and a sister; 12 grandchildren; and a great-grandchild. Dr. Brokken's brother Dr. Thomas Brokken (Minnesota '69) is a retired equine veterinarian in Florida. His nephew Dr. Matthew Brokken (Florida '03) serves as an assistant professor at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, and his nephew Dr. Todd Brokken (Minnesota '07) is an equine practitioner in California.

Michael E. Cole

Dr. Cole (Ross '90), 54, Deerfield Beach, Florida, died Oct. 22, 2017. He practiced small animal medicine at Cole Animal Clinic in Boca Raton, Florida, a practice established by his late mother, Dr. Patricia Cole (Kansas State '58), in 1966. Dr. Cole was a member of the Florida VMA. Memorials may be made to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, P.O. Box 96929, Washington, DC 20090.

Robert A. Connolly

Dr. Connolly (California-Davis '65), 85, Livermore, California, died Oct. 3, 2017. He practiced mixed animal medicine in Pleasanton, California. Dr. Connolly also served as track veterinarian at Golden Gate Fields and Bay Meadows Racetrack and at various county fairs, including the Alameda County Fair. He was an Army veteran of the Korean War. Dr. Connolly is survived by his wife, Octavia; four sons and a daughter; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Vladimir de Jong

Dr. de Jong (Texas A&M '84), 60, Dallas, died Nov. 8, 2017. He owned Vet Stop Animal Clinic, a small animal practice in Dallas, since 1990. Earlier, Dr. de Jong practiced mixed animal medicine at Cedar Hill Veterinary Clinic in Cedar Hill, Texas. His wife, Lori; a daughter; and his parents survive him. Memorials may be made to the Dr. Vladimir de Jong Endowed Scholarship, Texas A&M Foundation, 4461 TAMU, College Station, TX 77843.

Daniel L. DeWeert

Dr. DeWeert (Washington State '78), 69, Twisp, Washington, died Sept. 12, 2017. He co-owned Valley Veterinary Clinic with his wife, Dr. Teresa DeWeert (California-Davis '88), in Twisp, where he focused on equine medicine and small animal orthopedics prior to retirement in 2015. Dr. DeWeert also provided veterinary services to annual rodeos and horse races in the region.

Immediately following graduation, Dr. DeWeert practiced briefly in Brewster, Washington. He represented the Washington State VMA in the AVMA House of Delegates for several years and was a past member of the House Advisory Committee, and a past president of the WSVMA. Dr. DeWeert received the Washington State University Outstanding Leadership Award in 1987 and was named Washington State Veterinarian of the Year in 2011. He was active with the Kiwanis and served on the local community accountability board. Dr. DeWeert served as a veterinary technician in the Air Force during the Vietnam War. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and two stepsons, three grandchildren, and four sisters.

Martha A. Ferris

Dr. Ferris (Colorado State '93), 54, Wiggins, Colorado, died Oct. 17, 2017. In 2009, she established Ferris Veterinary Services in Wiggins, where she practiced large animal medicine, focusing on dairy medicine. Following graduation, Dr. Ferris served as a relief veterinarian in Fort Collins, Colorado. She subsequently moved to Wiggins and worked for Seven Bar Dairy and, later, for Front Range Farms Dairy, before founding her own practice. Dr. Ferris is survived by her husband, Brian; a son; her mother; and three sisters and a brother. Memorials may be made to the Marti Ferris Memorial Fund, High Plains Bank, 502 Central Ave., Wiggins, CO 80654.

Charles K. Fisher

Dr. Fisher (Virginia-Maryland '96), 44, Rocky Mountain, Virginia, died Aug. 7, 2017. He owned Veterinary Services, a mixed animal practice in Oak Level, Virginia. Following graduation, Dr. Fisher was in mixed animal ambulatory practice in Virginia's Franklin County. His father and two brothers survive him.

Robert J. Keough

Dr. Keough (Illinois '55), 86, Chicago, died Oct. 22, 2017. A small animal veterinarian, he founded Beverly Veterinary Hospital in Chicago, later co-founding Bevlab Animal Hospital in Blue Island, Illinois, where he practiced from 1968 until retirement in 2005. Dr. Keough also served as a commissioner for Cook County Animal Control for several years. A member of the Illinois State and Chicago VMAs, he received the CVMA Merit Award in 1991, ISVMA President's Award in 1993, and CVMA Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997. Dr. Keough was an Air Force veteran of the Korean War, attaining the rank of captain. Four daughters and a son, and 11 grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center, 9800 Willow Springs Road, Willow Springs, IL 60480; Society of St. Vincent de Paul Chicago, 10525 Delta Parkway, Schiller Park, IL 60176; or Christ the King School Foundation, 9240 South Hoyne Ave., Chicago, IL 60643.

George W. Lake

Dr. Lake (Ohio State '61), 86, Jefferson, Ohio, died Sept. 14, 2017. He owned a mixed animal practice in Jefferson for 50 years prior to retirement in 2011. Dr. Lake also served as veterinarian for the Ashtabula County Fair for several years. He was a member of the Rotary Club. Dr. Lake served in the Army during the Korean War. His son and daughter, eight grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, and two sisters survive him.

Kermit W. Minton

Dr. Minton (Oklahoma State '58), 85, Lindsay, Oklahoma, died Dec. 7, 2017. In 1958, he founded Lindsay Veterinary Hospital, where he practiced mixed animal medicine until retirement in 2009. Dr. Minton was a member of the Oklahoma VMA. In 2011, he received an Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences Distinguished Alumnus Award. Active in the community, Dr. Minton was a past president of the Lindsay Lions Club, a past secretary of the Lindsay Elks Lodge, and a member of the Lindsay chapter of the National FFA Organization. He is survived by his wife, Frankie, and daughter, Dr. Tammy Minton (Oklahoma State '93), who took over his practice in 1997. Memorials may be made to Lindsay Lions Club, American Exchange Bank, P.O. Box 128, Lindsay, OK 73052, or Oklahoma Eye Bank, 3840 N. Lincoln Blvd., Oklahoma City, OK 73105.

Tom R. Phillips

Dr. Phillips (Missouri '78), 65, Claremont, California, died Oct. 29, 2017. He was a professor of virology and microbiology at the Western University of Health Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine since 2003. During his tenure, Dr. Phillips helped organize and develop the curriculum for the university's Graduate College of Biomedical Sciences and served as associate dean of research for five years. He also chaired the WesternU Intellectual Property Committee for 10 years, and, most recently, served as managing director of WesternU Ventures. Following graduation, Dr. Phillips practiced small animal medicine at Madison Veterinary Clinic in Madison, Wisconsin. After obtaining his master's in immunology (1985) and a doctorate in immunology-virology (1989), both from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he joined the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, where he served initially as a research associate in the Department of Molecular Biology, and, later, worked in the Department of Neuropharmacology. In 2000, Dr. Phillips co-founded the Vaccine Research Institute of San Diego, serving as chairman of the board, chief executive officer, and vice president. Also in 2000, he began serving as an adjunct associate professor in the Department of Pathology at the University of California in La Jolla. Dr. Phillips is survived by his fiancee, Jeanne M. Becker; two sons; his father; and a brother. Memorials may be made to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, 1150 S. Olive St., Suite 2275, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

Jonathan R. Psaila

Dr. Psaila (Oklahoma State '13), 31, Clovis, California, died Aug. 3, 2017. He owned Psaila Veterinary Services, a mobile veterinary clinic, since 2015. Prior to that, Dr. Psaila practiced in Elk City, Oklahoma. He served as chair of the Mendota FFA Agricultural Advisory Committee and worked with the Fresno County 4-H Club to develop a pet food pantry. Dr. Psaila was a member of the California VMA. His parents and a brother survive him. Memorials toward a scholarship to support the postsecondary education of Clovis FFA members may be made via

David Jesse Wagstaff

Dr. Wagstaff (Cornell '62), 82, Pleasant Grove, Utah, died Sept. 1, 2017. A diplomate of the American Board of Veterinary Toxicology, he worked for the Food and Drug Administration prior to retirement in 1998. Dr. Wagstaff began his career in the United States Public Health Service as an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer in Texas. He subsequently worked for the EIS in Maryland and Michigan. After obtaining his doctorate in toxicology from the University of Utah, he taught at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine for four years prior to joining the FDA. Dr. Wagstaff authored the book "International Poisonous Plants Checklist: An Evidence-Based Reference." He is survived by his wife, Ann; three sons; 12 grandchildren; and a brother.

Kenneth J. Weigel

Dr. Weigel (California-Davis '76), 66, Palo Alto, California, died Sept. 30, 2017. A small animal veterinarian, he owned what was known as Palo Alto Pet Hospital. Dr. Weigel is survived by three children and his brother and sister. Memorials may be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, 1500 Rosecrans Ave., Suite 200, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266,; or American Humane, 1400 16th St. NW., Suite 360, Washington, DC 20036,

Robert A. Wescott

Dr. Wescott (Minnesota '57), 88, Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, died Oct. 31, 2017. A diplomate of the American College of Theriogenologists, he practiced mixed animal medicine in Elgin, Minnesota, for 24 years, also serving as a professor of large animal obstetrics at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine. He was a past president of the Minnesota VMA and served on the Minnesota Board of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr. Wescott was an Army veteran of World War II and the Korean War. His wife, Lenore; eight daughters and three sons; 45 grandchildren; and 57 great-grandchildren survive him. Memorials may be made to the Church of Notre Dame, 117 Allen St., Chippewa Falls, WI 54729.

Robert P. Whitaker

Dr. Whitaker (Washington State '54), 94, Milton, Washington, died Nov. 5, 2017. He owned Clover Park Veterinary Hospital, a small animal practice in Lakewood, Washington, prior to retirement in 1984. Dr. Whitaker served as the Washington State VMA's delegate to the AVMA House of Delegates in the 1980s and was a member of the American Animal Hospital Association. In 1982, Dr. Whitaker was named Washington State Veterinarian of the Year. He served in the Army Veterinary Corps from 1943-46.

Dr. Whitaker's wife, Jean; two daughters and a son; six grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren survive him.

Memorials may be made to the Washington State University Veterinary Scholarship Fund, Veterinary Develop­ment Office, P.O. Box 647010, Pullman, WA 99164.