Dr Jane Axon - February 2024 | British Equine Veterinary Association
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Dr Jane Axon - February 2024

28 Feb 2024 BEVA

EVA Executive Officer Jeffrey Wilkinson has provided the below statement following the passing of Dr Jane Axon.

It is with great sadness that I inform the Membership, that our dearly loved friend and colleague, Dr Jane Axon (EVA President 2008,) passed away last Friday evening.

Jane, a Life Member of EVA, Fellow of the AVA, Member of the College, Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Registered Specialist in Equine Medicine, and Gilruth Prize Winner, was a true legend of the equine veterinary profession. She was known and respected both here in Australia and internationally.

Over the course of her career, Jane brought great credit and made an immeasurable contribution to the veterinary profession. She was a dedicated clinician, a tenacious researcher, an explorer in technology transfer, an advancer of veterinary science, a teacher in post-graduate education, a mentor and hero to many, and as a leader of EVA, her professional association, of which she was a member for over 40 years.

As a clinician, Jane’s superior skill and knowledge was highly sought after. She was recognised around the country and throughout the world as an expert in her field of equine medicine and in particular, neonatal care. Jane became the Director of the Scone Equine Hospital Intensive Care Unit in 1999 and in a tribute, the Scone group said: “Her contribution to the development of Scone Equine Hospital cannot be overstated. She is one of the pillars on which it has been built.”

Jane provided superb service to AVA through her contribution to all matters of equine veterinary science, and especially AVA’s equine special interest group EVA. Becoming President Elect in 2007, the year that Equine Influenza (EI) struck the Australian herd.  She supported Australian equine veterinarians with a diligence and concerted effort that was faultless. As EVA President in 2008, there was still much post EI work for EVA to attend to, and Jane saw to this with a zeal and conscientiousness that set a high standard for those to follow.

However, it is in mentorship, training and education where Jane has made some of her greatest contributions to both the AVA and the veterinary profession. Over the course of a decade, EVA’s Bain Fallon Memorial Lectures were the beneficiary of Jane’s insight, skill, and judgement. Her international experience enabled EVA to tap into her long list of prestigious and influential international colleagues as keynote speakers at Bain Fallon. Jane remained a key driving force behind EVA’s Continuing Education program to the benefit of all members. Jane was the prime mover behind introducing the EVA-supported Bain Fallon Equine Nurses Conference, which is now conducted every year. Jane’s dedication and patience have guided and shaped the careers of many equine veterinarians and nurses.

Jane was also instrumental in the establishment of EVA's Young Member Group (YMG), aimed at welcoming veterinary students and recent graduates into the equine veterinary profession. Jane was a valuable counsel to countless young members since its inception in 2006; the YMG model has since been adopted by other national equine veterinary associations in several countries such as the United Kingdom, South Africa and New Zealand.

The AVA recognised Jane’s brilliant contribution when, in 2020, she was presented with the Gilruth Prize. The Gilruth is the highest honour awarded by the AVA and represents peer recognition for many years – often a lifetime – of dedication and service at the highest level.

Our thoughts are with Jane’s husband Dr Bill Marmion, her family, her friends, the EVA community, and all those who knew her across the diverse facets of her life. She was loved by many people in many places. We have lost one of the greats.

Vale Jane.