Human obituaries

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, December 2006:
Peter Roberts, 82, died on Novem-ber 15, 2006. “His
concern for animals started when after World War II service, he
settled down with his wife Anna to dairy farming in Hampshire,”
recalled Compassion In World Farming ambassador and former chief
executive Joyce D’Silva. “Peter began to take his old, barren cows
to the slaughterhouse and stayed with them to the end. The couple
refused to send their surplus calves to market, fearing they might
be bought for the live export trade and end up in veal crates in
France or Holland.” Appalled by the introduction of factory farming,
first with poultry, later with other species, “Peter wrote a strong
letter to the press and it generated a huge response,” D’Silva
continued. “Realizing that there was a groundswell of feeling
against intensive farming, he approached the major animal welfare
societies, urging them to campaign against battery cages. They
declined. Peter despaired to a solicitor friend, who said: “Peter,
you’ll just have to do it yourself. Come to my office and we’ll set
up a trust. Compassion in World Farming was born,” initially called
the Athene Trust. At first, the Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries
and Food treated Peter with what he charitably referred to as ‘benign
amusement.’ But Peter had touched a chord with the public, whose
awareness had been raised by the publication of Ruth Harrison’s
seminal book Animal Machines in 1964. Now Peter provided an
organised outlet for people’s horror at keeping hens in cages and
confining calves and breeding sows in narrow crates, unable to turn
around. Peter stopped farming, and in 1978, he opened the Bran Tub
in Petersfield,” an independent health food shop. “He also set up
Direct Foods,” Silva recalled, “marketing textured vegetable
protein. He himself had become a vegetarian. For all the years that
Peter put in as director of CIWF,” D’Silva added, “he managed never
to draw a salary.” CIWF won a British ban on veal crates in 1990,
and a ban on sow gestation crates in 1999. “However, to Peter’s
regret,” D’Silva said, “he never managed to achieve a permanent ban
on the export of live animals. In 2001, Peter, by then retired due
to the onset of Parkinson’s disease, received the first ever BBC TV
award for his outstanding contribution to animal welfare.” In 2002
he was made a member of the Order of the British Empire.

Donald H. Anthony, 80, died on October 7, 2006 in St.
Louis. Named general manager of the Humane Society of Missouri in
1963, Anthony established a reputation as an innovator of programs
now ubiquitous by opening adoption facilities separate from the
holding kennels and cages in 1965, introducing obedience training in
1968, starting a fundraising auxiliary and in-house pet supply store
in 1975, beginning a “visiting pets” program to take pets to
hospitals and nursing homes in 1979, and in 1983 encouraging
director of education Sue Gassner and KMOX radio personality Jack
Carney to start a program pairing older pets with senior citizens
that the St. Louis-based Ralston Purina Co. took national as “Pets
for People.” Further innovations included opening the 165-acre
George H. Packwood Animal Sanctuary & Longmeadow Farm in 1988, to
handle hooved animals, and starting a Cinderella Fund in 1989 to
provide veterinary care for recoverable and potentially adoptable
sick or injured animals. Anthony also lobbied for stronger
legislation against puppy mills, pet theft, and dogfighting, and
won the 1983 passage of a Missouri law authorizing humane societies
to obtain search and seizure warrants. Anthony retired after leading
rescue efforts during the severe St. Louis floods of 1993.

Carl Slaughter, 72, died on Nov-ember 20, 2006 in
Lawrenceville, Georgia. As a young U.S. Marine, he was among
25,000 U.S. troops who held back 320,000 Chinese invaders during a
60-mile retreat at the 1950 start of the Korean War. After the war,
recalled his longtime friend Mike McCrosky, “He worked for the
Arkansas Gazette as an illustrator against segregation. In the 1960s
he formed the Albert Schweitzer Memorial Fund to benefit neglected
and abused companion animals. He was active in that endeavor to his
end. During the 1980s, he supported the rescue of the burros at
China Lake from a proposed military slaughter. A known ‘hard-edge’
artist, he painted and sold his work widely. Most of the proceeds
were given to animal causes. Carl was a tireless worker,” McCrosky
continued, “who stood throughout the late 1980s and early 1990s
protesting the careless, inhumane and brutal destruction of primates
by both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Yerkes
Regional Primate Research Center at Emory University. Carl asked
that the ashes of his Yorkshire terrier be mixed with his own, then
spread by the Navy at sea,” McCrosky said. “Carl’s last words to me
before he died were ‘Semper Fidelis,’ the Marine Corps motto,
meaning ‘Always Faithful.'”

Phyllis Shulman, 80, died on November 18, 2006, in
Saratoga Springs, New York. A member of the Saratoga County Animal
Welfare League from 1973 to 1996, and president of the organization
1986-1996, Shulman raised money to buy property in Gansevoort and
build a no-kill animal shelter. The group housed as many as 24 cats
and dogs,” recalled Margarita Raycheva of The Saratogian. “Soon
after Shulman retired from the organization, the group fell apart.
She had been the only animal officer in the group,” which at peak
had 80 members, “and despite her efforts to train others, it just
didn’t work out.” The Saratoga County Animal Welfare League is now
defunct.

Becca Bingham, 39, her 4-year-old daughter, and her
2-year-old son were killed on November 10, 2006 by alleged
hit-and-run drunk driver Lawrence Trujillo, who was jailed. Bingham
volunteered at the Denver Dumb Friends League shelter from 1997 to
2001, then became a Homes With Hearts Foster Care program volunteer
in 2003.

Robert Wagner, 25, of Port St. Lucie, Florida, on
November 12, 2006 “died after being pulled into a stump grinder at a
Lake Wales hunting camp,” wrote Palm Beach Post staff writer Allyson
Bird. “Wagner was trying to save his friend John Santilli’s
Weimaraner after the dog’s leash was caught in the grinder. As they
ground palmetto stumps, Wagner saw Maggie, Santilli’s 6-month-old
puppy, headed for the grinder. He grabbed Maggie’s collar. The
grinder pulled them both in.”

Marianne Schmid, 67, of Totten-ham, Ontario, was found
dead in the woods near her home on November 6, 2006 by her husband
Walter Schmid and their two-year-old grandson, allegedly killed by
an errant shot from hunter Frederick Paul Thomas, 60, who was
charged with criminal negligence causing death and careless use of a
firearm. An avid hiker and wildlife-watcher, Marianne Schmid had
called the Ontario Provincial Police a week earlier, Walter Schmid
said, “because she had a scare with someone shooting.” Both Schmids
were born in Germany. Walter emigrated to Canada in 1958; Marianne
followed a year later to marry him.

Christopher Bergman, 57, director of the San Francisco SPCA
animal-assisted therapy program, died of cancer on November 2,
2006. “Bergman and his volunteers brought dogs, cats, chinchillas
and even a bearded dragon to convalescent homes, pediatric
hospitals, Alzheimer’s centers and mental health clinics,” recalled
San Francisco Chronicle staff writer Ilene Lelchuk. “They visited a
record 27,565 people in nearly 100 health care facilities” in 2005.

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