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Jeanne Fairweather, M.D.

Photo of Dr. FairweatherJeanne Fairweather, M.D., may not have graduated from Texas A&M University, but she formed a bond with the university as close as any former student. Fondly known around the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVM) as the “white coat doctor,” she lived a full life of service to others.

That spirit now lives on in an endowment to support future veterinarians. It provides scholarships and a professional coat to every student who has completed the first two years of veterinary school. “It’s a really nice closure,” said Kris Schoeffler ’03, who noted he will wear his coat throughout his professional life. “Dr. Fairweather had a genuine love of animals which she showed through her support of the vet students at A&M.”

Born in Connecticut, Dr. Fairweather graduated from Incarnate Word College in San Antonio and the University of Texas Medical School in Galveston. Committed to medicine, travel, and community service, she worked in refugee centers and was a charter member of the American Research Center in Egypt. She worked for nearly 30 years at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio.

It was there that a mutual friend introduced her to Dr. O. J. “Bubba” Woytek ’65, Assistant Vice President for Development & Alumni Relations. They developed a relationship that enriched both their lives over the course of a decade.

“We became good friends,” Woytek said. “She was always interested in what the students were doing to make the world a better place for animals. And, she left a legacy here at the vet school that fit with her whole life: helping other people. Our veterinary students will benefit from her generosity for many years to come.”

In one correspondence to students, Dr. Fairweather wrote, “It is so important to always be professional in appearance and actions. Putting on the white coat today should remind you of the honor and privilege you have to become part of the veterinary profession and part of the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences legacy.”

Dr. Fairweather rarely slowed down, even in retirement. An enthusiastic traveler and former president of the Southwest Texas Archaeological Society, she pursued a lifelong passion for archaeology through visits to Europe, the Far East, Egypt, the Holy Land, and Mexico.

In a letter she wrote to the Class of 2006 veterinary students thanking them for the notes and calls that kept her informed of their progress, she offered this encouragement: “Your studies are hard but worthwhile. There are so many wonderful things you will be able to do all the rest of your life for God’s creatures and their human families. I know you will succeed. At times, you will be very tired and discouraged—say a little prayer, put on your white coat, and you will do well.”