February 6, 1932 — January 13, 2023


John Thomas Vaughn black and white eadshot

Dean Emeritus John Thomas Vaughan ’55 was born in Tuskegee, Ala. and earned his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Auburn University in 1955. He practiced briefly in his hometown, but when he brought a cow to Auburn to have surgery, the dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine recruited him to be an instructor in the large animal clinic. He later attended the University of Pennsylvania to study equine surgery and returned to Auburn to teach large animal surgery. He left in 1970 to be a professor of surgery and director of the large animal hospital at Cornell University and returned to Auburn again in 1974 as the department head in large animal medicine. He was named dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine in 1977, a position he held until 1995.

Among the many honors bestowed on Vaughan throughout his career, the one that meant the most to him was the naming of the John Thomas Vaughan Large Animal Teaching Hospital at Auburn. He was a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Alabama Veterinary Medical Association, president of the American Association of Equine Practitioners and president of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons.

Vaughan served in retirement as chair of the Professional Liability Insurance Trust that provides insurance for veterinarians. At the time of his death he was working on a history of veterinary medicine at Auburn. He was a regular contributor of articles for the Auburn Veterinarian magazine.

Vaughan is survived by his wife of 66 years, Ethel Sell Vaughan ’67; three children, John Thomas Vaughan, Jr. ’82 and wife Renata, Faythe Vaughan ’84, and Michael Sell Vaughan ’85; and seven grandchildren.

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