Virginia Tech Wildlife Expert Dies

BLACKSBURG, Va., March 5, 2003 – Dr. Patrick F. Scanlon, professor of fisheries and wildlife sciences, died on Tuesday, March 4, 2003, while hiking in the cloud forest of Taiwan with doctoral student, Po-Jen Chiang, and Virginia Tech colleague, Michael R. Vaughan. The three researchers had gone to Taiwan to continue their study project on leopards native to that area.

Scanlon was born in Athlone, Ireland, on September 16, 1941. After earning his doctorate from the National University of Ireland, Scanlon began his career as an assistant professor at Virginia Tech in 1971. Don Orth, head of the fisheries and wildlife sciences department, says, "For 32 years Dr. Scanlon demonstrated a breadth and depth of knowledge and innovative thinking that kept him continuously at the forefront of his field. He is internationally recognized for his research program on the physiology and toxicology of wild animals and collaborated with scientists in all parts of the world. He was an outstanding graduate mentor to over forty graduate students and hundreds of undergraduate students and an excellent teacher who regularly taught courses in wildlife field biology, vertebrate pest management, and wildlife physiology, toxicology, and nutrition."

Scanlon authored or co-authored over 250 technically reviewed journal articles and lectured extensively around the world. Scanlon was a devoted university citizen and was elected to the Virginia Tech Academy of Service Excellence in three separate years in recognition to service on Faculty Senate and numerous university committees and commissions. Surviving him are his wife, Ann Scanlon, two daughters, Janet and Judith, and two sons, James and Jody.

Greg Brown, dean of the College of Natural Resources, says that "Pat had a stellar career. Not only was he very successful in his field, but he served the university well. He was always anxious to discuss issues and offer suggestions. We will miss that. And we will miss seeing him around the hallways."