Longtime Hagyard Equine Medical Institute Veterinarian, Dr. James D. (Jim) Smith, 86, Passes

Dr. James Donovan (Jim) Smith, DVM, of Lexington, Ky., husband of Judy Smith passed away on Dec. 28, 2020, surrounded in love by his family. Dr. Smith was born Oct. 10, 1934, in Hutchinson, Kan., to the late Raymond and Anita Smith.

Dr. Smith earned his Bachelor and Doctorate degrees in Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University where he was a member of the Gamma Epsilon Chapter of Beta Theta Pi. Known affectionately as “Doc”, Jim developed a love for equine medicine during his studies. This passion led him to specialize in equine reproductive medicine and ophthalmology. Jim enjoyed a long and successful career at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute for over 40 years.

As a senior partner, Jim mentored and encouraged many young veterinarians. He instilled a lifelong love of learning with everyone he met. Dr. Smith was an extremely active member of both the veterinary and civic world, serving as president of the Kentucky Equine Practitioners Association, as well as a board member, secretary, and treasurer of the American Association of Equine Practitioners. Jim was also active in Rotary, the Kentucky Harness Commission, the Kentucky Equine Drug Council, the Fayette County Board of Education, the Kentucky Equine Practitioners Infectious Disease Committee, Quality Assurance Program of the Association of Racing Commissioners International, The Jockey Club Medication Commission, The Committee on Environmental Affairs for the American Veterinary Medical Association, The George T. Fairchild Society, The Bluegrass Boys Ranch, and sat on the board of the Kentucky Equine Adoption Center.

After retiring from practice, he was involved in the Christian Muslim Dialogue, BUILD Nehemiah Action, The Cricket Club, and Birthright of Lexington – receiving the Louise Summerhill Award in 2017 along with his wife Judy.  Dr. Smith’s other awards include the Joan F. Pew Award for Racing Commissioners, the E.R. Frank Award for Meritorious Service, the Kansas State University Distinguished Veterinary Alumni Award, Registry of Merit from the American Quarter Horse Association, and he was Commissioned a Kentucky Colonel.

His love for music started early when he was the youngest musician hired by Universal Studios to play trombone in their live studio orchestra. This evolved into him performing with the Lexington based big band group Men of Note. After moving to Kentucky, he also had his own local television show on KET called, Camping with Jim Smith. His numerous hobbies included reading, exploring the outdoors, dancing, and traveling, Panama being a favorite. He was the life of the party and loved cooking and feeding his friends and family, though never on time. He was deeply passionate about naps, ice cream, and head scratches. His love of endless storytelling and conversation meant that he never met a stranger and was never far from home. Family and friends describe Jim as “caring and gentle, hardworking and curious, intelligent but always learning. A man who truly lived life to the fullest.”

In addition to his loving wife of 31 years, he is survived by ten children: Laura (Martin) Smith-Nederpelt, Kelley Smith, Jeff (Melanie) Smith, Tim (Kelly) Smith, Amy (Patrick) Randles, Madison (Robert) Crispen, Sean (Kelly) Profitt, Jonathan (Rachel) Profitt, Nanzobe Aimee, and Bigabo Jackson; nine grandchildren: Sharee, Lauren, Emma, Will, Grace, Jackson, Gabrielle, Solomon, and Graham; two siblings, Michael (Cheryl) Smith and Pat (Rhea) Serpan; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.

The visitation will be held on Sunday from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., at Milward’s 159 North Broadway in Lexington. His memorial mass will be a private, family event.

In lieu of flowers, donations are encouraged to the Kentucky Equine Adoption Center, P.O. Box 910124, Lexington, Kentucky 40591 or St. Paul Catholic Church, 425 W. Short St., Lexington, KY 40507.

The post Longtime Hagyard Equine Medical Institute Veterinarian, Dr. James D. (Jim) Smith, 86, Passes appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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