Tributes have been paid to one of the most influential veterinary surgeons of his generation.
Bob Michell, who died on 8 October, aged 75, was a former RCVS president and BVA council member whose contributions to veterinary and human health saw him awarded both the Chiron Award and the Dalrymple-Champneys Cup and Medal.
A member of RCVS council from 1992 to 2004, Prof Michell was president from 1999 to 2000. During his time on the council, he served as a member of all the major committees of that time, except the disciplinary committee, and chaired several of the boards for the former RCVS diplomas.
Current RCVS president Chris Tufnell said: “Bob was 100% responsible for my involvement with the RCVS, putting me forward for a working party in my first year in practice.
“Throughout his career he nurtured young professionals, who he genuinely saw as the future, and was dedicated to furthering and improving the education and development of veterinary surgeons, demonstrated by his involvement in the RCVS diplomas, the college’s CPD board and the former RCVS Trust.
“His dedication to our profession was exceptional and his kind and erudite observations, both public and private, were always welcome. We will miss him and our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.”
BVA president Gudrun Ravetz described Prof Michell as a “true one health champion”.
She said: “The BVA and veterinary colleagues were saddened to hear of Prof Michell’s death and our thoughts are with his family and friends. As part of our veterinary family, Prof Michell contributed to the BVA’s council over 25 years, showing a characteristic commitment to the profession and its members.
“Prof Michell was also the recipient of two of the BVA’s most prestigious awards – the Chiron Award and the Dalrymple-Champneys Cup and Medal. This is testament to the outstanding contribution he made to both veterinary and human medical science, being a true one health champion.
“His research is recognised internationally and will continue to influence and inspire those working in veterinary, human and comparative medicine.”
As well as his many professional achievements, Prof Michell was a contributor to Veterinary Times, where his monthly Speculum column proved hugely popular for more than a decade.
Veterinary Times editor Paul Imrie said: “We’ve been privileged to feature a column by someone of Bob’s calibre. He wrote authoritatively, concisely and passionately on many subjects, and everyone here is very sad to hear of his death. Our thoughts are naturally with his family and the many people in the profession and outside of it who called him a friend.”
Prof Michell is survived by daughter Tania and three grandchildren. A private funeral will take place in Cornwall, with a memorial service planned in London early next year.