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Anna Elizabeth Worth

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Anna Elizabeth Worth 1953-2009 SHAFTSBURY Anna Elizabeth Worth, 55, a resident of Shaftsbury, Vermont died peacefully Saturday May 16, 2009 at her home surrounded by her family following a valiant fight with cancer. She was born on September 10, 1953 in West Chester, PA to Richard Merritt Worth and Sarah Edge Worth and had an active upbringing full of travel and animals. She graduated from Wilmington Friends School in 1971 and from Denison University with a biochemistry degree in 1975. She met her husband, Dr. Bob Bergman, at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine where she obtained her VMD as part of the class of 1978. They were married the same year at Romansville Quaker Meeting, Romansville, PA. They spent their honeymoon in Britain working as veterinarians during lambing season. After returning to the States, they spent one year working at a mixed animal practice in Glasgow, Montana before finally settling in Shaftsbury, Vermont with their goats in tow. They operated West Mountain Animal Hospital near their house in Shaftsbury while raising their two children. Anna strived to provide excellent medical care to animals and compassion to her clients. The hospital was moved to Harwood Hill with their partner Dr. Linda Morris in 2007. Anna was very involved in organized veterinary medicine. Locally, she served on the Board of the Bennington County Humane Society. She also served as President of the Vermont Veterinary Medical Association (VVMA), where she founded and edited the VVMA newsletter. She served as the Vermont delegate to the American Veterinary Medical Association from 1992 - 1999. In 1992 she received the Massachusetts SPCA Veterinarian of the Year Award, and in 1997 the David Walker Award. She served as chairperson for the Vermont Cruelty Task Force and the Vermont Animal Welfare Committee. Across the past 12 years, Anna became passionately involved with the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA), an international organization focused on raising the level of companion animal health care and providing standards and accreditation for 3,000 hospitals and 40,000 veterinary professionals. She served on numerous AAHA committees, including the Foundation Board of Trustees, the Accredited Referral Practice Task Force, and the Animal Welfare and Ethics Task Force. She acted as the AAHA representative for the CATalyst Council, National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy, and the World Small Animal Veterinary Association. In 2005 she helped found the AAHA Helping Pets Fund, which provides funds to pets and clients in need. From 2008 to 2009, during her illness, she served as the AAHA President and championed Student Advocacy, Mentoring Guidelines, and had numerous speaking engagements at veterinary colleges in the US and Canada. During her AAHA tenure, she continued to be involved in other veterinary activities, including a Veterinary Management Group, the AAHA Veterinary Management Institute, and President of the Society for Veterinary Medical Ethics. Because of her accomplishments and far-reaching influence, she will be missed by members of her profession worldwide. Anna grew up in a home where she was allowed to bring her treasured donkeys into her parents' living room. Her love for the natural world was evident in her vocation and hobbies, which included gardening, astronomy, riding her motorcycle, playing tennis, bicycling, camping, and boating. Anna was a voracious reader and loved trying new things, traveling, and meeting people. She was actively involved in the community, participating in the Parent Teacher Association, the MAU High School Curriculum Committee, and the Vermont Women's Fund. Anna was a beloved mother, friend and spouse. Always a role model for her children, it was rare for her to miss an athletic event or a milestone in their childhood. She served as a Girl Scout troop leader and basketball coach. Anna was a born leader, communicator, and creative thinker. Her limitless passion and energy for new things was revered by all who knew her. Most importantly, Anna was an optimist, and it was this optimism that propelled her through a difficult year and inspired her loved ones so much. In addition to her husband of 31 years, she is survived by one daughter, Sarah M. Bergman of Tucson, Arizona, and one son, Bo Bergman, with his wife, Megan Mayhew-Bergman, and one granddaughter, Anna "Frasier" Bergman, of Shaftsbury, Vermont. She also is survived by her mother, Sarah Worth, sister Lark Worth, and brother Richard Worth, all of West Chester, Pennsylvania. Many cousins, nephews, nieces, an extensive network of close personal friends, a dedicated WMAH staff, innumerable clients and patients will also miss her. Pippa, Walker, Moses, Beamer, Taylor, Oliver, Olivia, Whispy, Nemo, Jack, Betsy, Greta and Nimbus will miss her warm lap, gentle touch, and constant affection. FUNERAL NOTICE: A life celebration for Anna will be held on May 31 at 10:00am at Greenwall Auditorium, Bennington College, Bennington, VT. Burial will be held in Romansville, Pennsylvania at the family gravesite at a later date. In lieu of flowers, contributions in memory of Anna can be made to the AAHA Helping Pets fund online at http://www.aahahelpingpets.org/individuals.html or the Southwestern Vermont Regional Cancer Center by check made out to "Southwestern Vermont Cancer Resource Fund" through the office of the Mahar and son Funeral Home 628 Main St. Bennington, VT 05201.
Published in Bennington Banner from May 18 to May 20, 2009
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