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Thomas Anthony Russell DVM

1932 - 2018
Thomas Anthony Russell DVM Obituary
Dr. Thomas Anthony Russell, 86, of Glenview, Illinois, passed peacefully at his home on August 22, 2018, following a lengthy struggle with cancer. Dr. Russell, the son of Frank and Marguerite (Moser) Russell was born April 19, 1932, in Eagle Grove, Iowa. After graduating from high school, working, and serving in the United States Army, he pursued his childhood dream of becoming a veterinarian. In 1962, he received his DVM degree from the College of Veterinary Medicine, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa. It was during those years that he became engaged to his college sweetheart, the young lady who sat next to him in English class and had starred opposite him in one of the college plays. On June 15, 1956, he and Helen Elizabeth Ogland daughter of Edwin and Nellie (Dueland) Ogland were married at St. John's Catholic Church in Clarion, Iowa. After practicing in LaCrosse, Wisconsin for a year, Dr. Russell was asked to return to Riser Animal Hospital, Skokie, Illinois, where he had interned summers. At the same time, he was invited to become part of the Iowa State's Veterinary Staff. In 1963, Dr. Russell and his family moved to Skokie where he practiced until his retirement in 1998. During his career, he mentored many students and colleagues. The gentle, humble veterinarian lived his philosophies "Be the best you can be", and "Always leave a place better than you found it". His professional history and service speak volumes. In 1984, he was elected president of the Chicago Veterinary Medical Association and in 1996, he was elected president of the Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association. His life was about service and he was recognized as a quiet, but challenging leader who was highly respected. In 2001, Dr. Russell was presented the Stange Award, the highest honor given to distinguished alumni of Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. In addition, his commitment and dedication garnered him the following:1999 – Lifetime Merit Award, CVMA 1998 – Meritorious Service Award, ISVMA 1996 – Outstanding Service Award, American Animal Hospital Association 1995 – Alumni Association Service Award, College of Veterinary Medicine University of Illinois. As passionate as he was about being a veterinarian, Dr. Russell was even more passionate about his faith, family, and community. His leadership and volunteerism were exercised in many endeavors and ministries: Marriage and Family Life, Christian Family Movement, RENEW, RCIA, Knights of Columbus, Scripture Studies, Great Books, Adult Education, and scouts. In 2004, when the USCCB made a commitment to promote and protect marriage and family life, he and Helen assisted the Rockford Diocese in implementing the 2009 Pastoral Letter. In 2012, the Chicago Congregation of the Resurrection honored them with their merit award for their service and commitment to marriage, family, and parish life. Dr. Russell's family would describe him as a man who had many talents, interests, and hobbies. He enjoyed gardening, water sports, refinishing furniture, art classes, handcrafts, jigsaw puzzles, and teasing his grandchildren. Dr. Russell's friends would say he was "caring", his grandchildren would describe him as "fun", his children would say he was "the best", and his wife would say "he was perfect". Dr. Russell is survived by his wife of 62 years; four children, Andrea of Racine, WI; Robert, MD (Lisa) of Bloomington, IL; James (Kim), and Carol (Matthew) Cutrara of Chicago. Also he is survived by fifteen grandchildren, Nicole (David) Collette; Ryan, Cullen, Brennan, Kelly, Quinn, Emily, Hannah, Natalie, and Christopher Russell; and Charlie, Nicholas, Luke, Matthew and Thomas Cutrara; and one great granddaughter, MacKenzie Collette; two sisters, Marjorie Handley Sutter (Ted), and Kathleen (Robert) Keeling; sisters-in-law, Judy Russell, Sue Ogland, and Mildred Knight. Dr. Russell was preceded in death by his parents; siblings and in laws, Leo (Louise); Jim; and Shirley (Evan) Benton; brothers – in – law, William Handley, Ervin Ogland, James Knight and sister – in – law, Ann (Bernard) Trotter. Services were held . Memorials may be made to Nicholas S. Cutrara Special Needs Trust, 16272 Prince Drive South Holland, IL 60473 – 3223 or Sister Paulanne's Needy Family Fund, 1775 Grove Street, Glenview, IL 60025. Info: www.donnellanfuneral.com or (847) 675-1990
Published in a Chicago Tribune Media Group Publication from Aug. 26 to Aug. 30, 2018
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