Glenwood Veterinary Clinic (GVC) was established in 1936 and has continued to serve the Roaring Fork, Colorado, and Eagle river valleys since its inception. The practice has operated from the same property but has undergone many metamorphoses as the composition of the valley has changed over the years. GVC has always been a mixed animal practice but in the earlier years its emphasis was on food animal medicine as the mountain valleys were primarily farming and ranching communities. GVC was owned and operated by Dr. Carter Jackson and Dr. Allan Bowles in the early years. These were two very hard-working and dedicated veterinarians who provided decades of quality veterinary care to the surrounding mountain valleys. You could not meet two nicer gentlemen and they were both endeared by their clientele.
In 1993 the practice was purchased by Dr. Luedke and Dr. Coffman. GVC was remodeled and transitioned to serve the growing equine and small animal population as the valley grew and became more urban. As the quality and value of the horses in the valley increased a need for an equine surgical facility was evident. GVC built an equine surgical facility and referral center in 2003 and added a board-certified equine surgeon, Dr. Tom Bohanon. The practice was sold to Dr. Johnson in 2018 and the facility has once again been remodeled to become an AAHA-certified small animal hospital providing top notch small animal care in the valley. The equine side of practice is now focused on equine sports medicine, podiatry, dentistry, and emergency services but still offers limited surgical services as well as preventive medical care. Food animal services are still offered but have become a smaller part of GVC as the valley ranches have gradually disappeared.
We would like to thank the many associate veterinarians, interns, and veterinary students who have contributed to GVC success over the years. GVC is proud to have mentored so many veterinarians and veterinary students and contributed to their success in the profession.
by Dennis Luedke, DVM, Owner 1993-2019
Memories of Glenwood Veterinary Clinic
Sandy Jackson: Memories of Glenwood Veterinary Clinic
My dad bought the clinic somewhere 1951-52. He purchased it from Dr. McGrath. Dr. McGrath was probably the founder, but I don’t know for certain. I do not know anything about Dr. McGrath except he had 4 boys and dad eventually had 4 girls. Dad practiced until 1983 when he turned 60. He had just gotten bifocals. He had a cow after him, he tried to jump up on the corral fence but with the new glasses missed the rail. He thought that was dangerous so…
He practiced for over 32 years. Most of his practice was large animals in later years. But he also stated his bread and butter was often dogs and cats. He treated Zsa Zsa Gabor’s dog and Jill St. John’s cat. He did treat an elephant and a myna bird. The myna bird was owned by Mr. Tyler who owned the Crystal River Ranch at that time. We even boarded the bird in our dining room when Mr. Tyler would travel.
Our mother did not like birds, so it was a big deal. But Mr. Tyler was an important client. Pendi would often greet Dad by saying “what a day” when Dad would get home. For many of those years he was on call 24/7. There were many nights and holidays that he was called out, but I don’t remember him ever missing a recital, play, or event of his daughters. We always ate breakfast together as we did not know if Dad would make it home in time for dinner.
We lived in the house next door until 1962 when we moved to the ranch and my current home. Our house was in what is now the vacant lot between the clinic and old Grand. My parents sold it to Dr. Donald Stewart, a dentist, when we moved to the ranch. His family lived there through the 1990’s, I think. It then became a mortuary and later an Antique store. It burned down 15 +/- years ago.
Most of our memories are those of kids who had a great place to play. We spend lots of time at the Vet clinic with our dad and/or Mr. Hammerich. You may or may not be able to imagine having 4 small girls running around the clinic. Of course, the building was smaller then. Mr. Hammerich would keep an eye on us. I understand we worried him often as we would climb on fences/gates (which occasionally would
come down on top of us.) George and Charlotte Hammerich were retired ranchers – they owned what is now Springridge up 4-Mile. They lived in the little house/cottage which Mom and Dad had moved from the back door of our house when they remodeled it. There are two pictures of the cottage being moved to its present-day location. There is also a picture of 2 steers in the back field of the Vet Clinic. You will notice the lack of houses and highway 82. My sisters wanted me to point out the pigpen in the right corner. It was a great place for them to play in, once Oscar the pig had “moved” on.
We spent lots of time in the truck with Dad traveling from ranch to ranch. I remember one day at what I now know as Crystal River Ranch. He had little tubes frozen in nitrogen that he would break the ends off of. I would count how many hits it would take. Now, I know he was artificially inseminating the cows but under 10 – I had no clue. Same place – a different time – they were branding. Dad must have been castrating for them. One of the ranch hands would take the products of the castration, salt them and then eat them raw. Once again, I really didn’t have a clue what was going on.
Dad always gave his daughters a task when we rode with him. Sometimes it was counting the vials or getting things from his truck for him. I remember he was treating a horse for colic; I think it was, he had just pulled the tube and he handed it to me asked me to carry it to his truck, which was not my favorite.
We always got to/were assigned to hold the tail if he was pulling a calf. I wish I could remember our conversations as I’m certain we always had questions about what he was doing. Thursday afternoons at Alsbury Sales Barns were a great hit! He would check on the general health of the stock being sold. We were on tap to help vaccinate the piglets. We would often sit in on the auction for a while. He always told us to be very careful to not raise our hands or we would end up buying something. One’s nose itches like crazy when they are not to raise their hand. I am certain that Mr. Alsbury knew that we were not bidding on anything.
Dad always commented that a veterinarian was responsible to treat the animals but also to care for the owner. I remember watching him console someone as they made the difficult decision to put a pet (dog, cat, horse, cow) down. He always treated that animal and its owner with dignity and care. Even when the dog ended up biting him in the face. He was carefully picking up a dog with a broken back when the dog bit him on the face. Lots of stitches above his lip and almost lost an ear. He just said it was his own fault, that the dog was in pain.
Our mom was very involved, she kept the books for many years. I can remember her doing the bills and getting them ready to mail, sitting at her desk in their bedroom. She also kept track of him, to let folks know where he was if they called the house.
As we became teenagers, Dad got more help at the clinic. It also was not quite as exciting for us to ride around with him anymore. And he started to have vet students or vet tech students ride around with him. Dad was involved in starting the Farm and Ranch program at CMC which later became the Vet Tech program.
There are often smells that remind one of a place or time. Dad loved to use Kopertox for so many things. When I smell Kopertox – I can picture him. I think he even used it on our trees when porcupines chewed on them. I spent a lot of time with my dad in his later years. We would drive through the valley; he could always tell me whose ranch we were driving by or whose ranch used to sit where the houses sit now. Often, he could tell me the name of their horse or a sick animal that he had been called on to treat. It seemed that many of those sick animals were sick at night, in the wind, and rain or snow. He could always name the owners and often tell me what they served him for dinner after his work was done. One more anecdote; a salesman from FM Light out of Steamboat would come to our home once/twice a year. He had a station wagon filled with work gloves, ropes, Levis, boot, hats, and who know what else. He was the main supplier of work clothes and gear for Dad for many years. No internet or Walmart back then.
I have attached a picture of Dad that was to be in National Geographic, it was eventually cut out of the article. But it is a great picture. The article was about ranching in Western Colorado and was taken up at the Mike Strang Ranch. There is another picture of Dad with the radioman. There was a shortwave radio set up at the clinic. We would call KDW706 base to car 1 when we needed Dad. There is a picture with John Benton at his ranch up in Burns. He had a large ranch. One last photo is Dad, my brother-in- law Bob Dando, and Orest Gerbaz branding. Mr. Gerbaz owned a large ranch up in the Aspen area. He retired and came to work for dad managing the ranch as dad was busy with his vet practice.
I have also included a copy of my dad’s book that he wrote about his life. Around page 30 – he starts talking about buying the practice in Glenwood. He did graduate from Garfield County High. His mother and stepfather moved to Glenwood in 1937 when Dad was 14. Dad was very proud of his daughters and granddaughters. He knew his youngest granddaughter had been accepted to the University of Tennessee Veterinary School before he passed away.
Dr. Martha Cook, DVM practices in Renton, Washington.
Dr. Tedorovic: The Original Glenwood Veterinary Clinic Owner?
I learned a bit more about the history of the Glenwood Vet Clinic over the weekend. In visiting with my 98 year old Aunt – she talked about a Dr. Tedorovic. He is the only vet she remembers from her youth. He was married to her 2nd grade teacher- Miss Bell. Miss Bell was the sister of Pat Bell who lived across the street where the old Rivers restaurant was. The name Tedorovic was also confirmed by Carlton Hubbard (93), he has been a local historian of the area. My aunt’s father owned a ranch, now Sunlight estates up 4-mile. She can remember Dr. Tedorovic coming to their ranch to remove a cancerous eye from Jerry, her dad’s favorite horse. Jerry was a white horse and apparently very calm. Jerry was used to train all the other horses on the ranch so I suspect it was worth having the cancer eye removed. The timeframe seems to fit as well as the location – Mr. Hubbard remembered Dr. Tedorovic living across the road from the Vet Clinic. He doesn’t think the house that my parents bought from Dr. McGrath was there at that time. So, Dr. Tedorovic may have been the founder/original owner of Glenwood Vet Clinic.
Patty Jackson: My memories... Probably Embellished Over Time.
During the late 1950’s and early 60’s, we lived next door right next door to the Glenwood Veterinary Clinic. While this was great fun and we had many adventures at the clinic, it was also hard for our dad to ever get away from work.
I remember loving to go with him on Sunday mornings to feed the boarding animals. I suspect my mother encouraged us to go with Daddy, so she would have the house to herself for a few hours. We eagerly “helped” clean cages and spilled water while refilling water bowls, but the best part was asking Daddy to “cage us up”. I am sure he did this happily and we barked and meowed right along with the other cage inhabitants.
When I was very small, a cow escaped from the vet clinic. Daddy immediately saddled up his horse, to chase down the cow. I honestly don’t remember if he caught the cow, but his horse slipped on the pavement, fell, and broke Daddy’s leg. Thankfully, the leg healed but the stories of our mother having to drive him on emergency calls in the middle of the night, dragging all four of us along were told for many years around the dining room table. Can you imagine the smell of his cast after dragging it through muddy fields and manure piles?
I also remember that one client, Coach Stubler boarded his dog while away on vacation. When Coach returned to town, he just called up the vet clinic and said to turn his dog loose. The dog always found its way home. The Stublers lived on Sopris Ave. and at that time, there was not much activity between the two addresses.
We all loved Thursdays in the summer when the sales were held at Alsbury’s Sales Barn. Daddy did heath inspections before the auction – drawing blood and then spinning it in the centrifuge. This was a fascinating process to a young child but the best part was vaccinating the piglets. He sometimes allowed us to deliver the shot in what we called the pig’s armpit. Other times we held the squealing, wiggling piglet while he vaccinated.