Alvin F. Weber, DVM, MS, PhD, St. Paul, Minn., died December 29, 2019, at 101. Weber joined the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) faculty in 1949 and helped found the college in its infancy. He was a research and teaching faculty member for more than 60 years. His research interests included cytology, ultrastructure, and cytogenetics as related to the reproductive and hematopoietic systems. His work was peer-reviewed and published more than 60 times.
Weber was born in Hartford, Wis., on March 13, 1918. He completed his bachelor of arts (1941), Master of Science (1946), and PhD (1949) at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He received his DVM from Iowa State University in Ames in 1944. Weber and his colleagues were among the first in the US to use antibiotics to treat bovine mastitis.
Weber was an instructor at the University of Wisconsin until moving to the University of Minnesota to take an assistant professor of anatomy position. He later rose to become a professor and the head of the Department of Anatomy at the CVM. In 1988, Weber was named professor emeritus at the CVM, but continued to conduct part-time diagnostic research.
Weber served as president of the American Association of Veterinary Anatomists in 1957, national president of Phi Zeta (1959-1961); secretary-treasurer (1960-65), vice president (1986-88), and president (1987-88) of the Conference of Research Workers in Animal Disease; secretary (1971-75) and president (1975-79) of the World Association of Veterinary Anatomists; and program chairman of the World Veterinary Congress through the World Association of Veterinary Anatomists in 1979. He was a special research fellow for NIH from 1959–1960 and again from 1971–1972. He attained a World Health Organization Travel Fellowship for Leukemia Studies in 1974. In 1989, he received the Achievement Award from the American Association of Veterinary Anatomists.
Weber is survived by his daughter, Elizabeth; son Thomas; and friend Hazel. He is preceded in death by his son William and wife, Eleanor.
Kari Searcy, ’12 DVM, Elko New Market, Minn., died May 25, 2020 at 33. Searcy was passionate about horses, and spent a year interning in Seattle, Wa., working primarily in equine medicine. Afterwards she went on to work in private practice in Prior Lake, Minn. She is survived by her parents, Randy and Barb Searcy; and brother, Ryan Searcy.
Larissa Minicucci, '04 MPH, DVM, East Bethel, Minn., passed away on November 16 at 45. After earning a master's of public health, she completed a fellowship with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Epidemic Intelligence Service, in Fort Collins, Colo. In 2006, she joined the veterinary faculty of the CVM as an assistant professor in the Department of Veterinary Population Medicine. Minicucci is survived by her husband, Lou, and her family. Learn more about her lasting impact on the CVM here.
Meaghan E. Swensen, ’00 DVM, Lindstrom, Minn., died February 27 at 46. Before completing her DVM at the CVM, Swensen completed her BS in biology at the University of Minnesota Duluth in 1995. She practiced small animal veterinary medicine at Lakes Veterinary and Surgical Center in Lindstrom, Minn., for 17 years. Swensen loved and rescued retired racing greyhounds, volunteering many hours for Minnesota Greyhound Rescue. She is survived by her husband, Jeremy; and 3 children.
Lois E. Harmon, ’97 DVM, Becker, Minn., died Feb. 17, 2018 at age 63. Harmon was a shelter veterinarian at the Tri-County Humane Society for 13 years, during which time the Tri-County Humane Society estimates that she cared for more than 40,000 animals.
Janet D. Veit, ’96 DVM, La Crescent, Minn., died May 20, 2018 at age 48. Viet worked as a veterinarian at Hillside Animal Hospital in La Crosse, Wis. for 22 years.
Guy S. Hohenhaus, ’88 BS, ’90 DVM, Annapolis, Md., died June 25 at age 57. Hohenhaus was the state veterinarian and chief of animal health for the Maryland Department of Agriculture from 2005–14. He previously served as Maryland's state public health veterinarian for the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and was a past president of the National Assembly of State Animal Health Officials. He was a professor at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine from 1990–2002 and director of its veterinary epidemiology residency program. He was a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. During his army service, Hohenhaus designed and implemented food safety, zoonotic disease, and refugee programs in eight countries. He received the Bronze Star in 2004 for his contributions toward rebuilding Afghanistan's veterinary and public health infrastructure. He is survived by his wife, Michelle.
John W. Reynolds, ’84 DVM, South Milwaukee, Wis., died February 7, 2017 at 65. Reynolds spent the majority of his career working at Cudahy Veterinary Clinic, and shared his love of animals with his daughter, who went on to pursue a career in veterinary medicine as well. He is survived by his wife Jeanne; and two children.
Bob Morrison, '84 PhD, '86 DVM, MBA, a professor in the Department of Veterinary Population Medicine, died in a traffic accident near Prague in the Czech Republic on May 2, 2017. Morrison joined the CVM in 1986. In addition to teaching and conducting research, he coordinated two swine health management conferences: the St. Paul-based Allen D. Leman Swine Conference and the Leman China Conference in Nanjing, China. He had recently launched the Swine Health Monitoring Project, which provides weekly reports on the health status of more than 50 percent of U.S. sow herds. Morrison earned his DVM at the University of Saskatchewan and his PhD and MBA at the University of Minnesota. In 2016, National Hog Farmer honored him as one of the Masters of the Pork Industry.