By: Dr. Bill Rishel

I first met Dr. Leroy Dorminy at a CVM Board meeting. I was a rookie so maybe that is why he sat down right next to me. He introduced himself and then immediately started with, “Let me tell you my vision for Christian Veterinary Mission.” As he talked there was that smile and the twinkle in his eye that told me this was really going to be a special friendship.

Prior to each board meeting for the next eight years I would call Leroy to ask what he was thinking.  Those were such great times for me to hear what one of Gods servants had on his heart. You could always hear his concern for students, veterinarians and the people they serve around the world. What wisdom he had in relationship building with people from so many different cultures!

He encouraged me in many ways. After the board meetings before the doctors ruined it we would share the day’s happenings over ice cream. He would call me every 3-4 months through the year.  I can still picture those times when he called, in the desert on a short-term trip, on the Fourth of July checking on patients, during a season when I was being treated for cancer. “Bill what are you doing?” “Leroy I am finishing up at the clinic”, most times he would respond “well I declare”. Every Christmas there was the gift of pecans.  I was so glad when I visited Ocilla that Kathryn toke me to see his orchards.  I could see him nurturing those trees that I enjoyed the fruit from.

I learned many valuable lessons from my friend Leroy. When God asks, you say yes. God doesn’t ask of someone that can’t do the job.  Use your veterinary skills to teach. Don’t do for someone what they can do themselves. Surround yourself with really good godly people. Build relationships with everyone you meet. Be genuinely concerned about them and their families. Check on them often. Pray for them daily. Have a vision. It’s not just about the work of the day but listen to what God has for you in the future through prayer, scripture and the wisdom from those around you.

When I think of Leroy I think of the boy in John 6 that supplied the loaves and fish for Jesus to feed the 5000. The boy brought what he had.  Jesus blessed it and a miracle happened. CVM is an amazing story of someone that said okay God use me. My prayer is that we each do that today.

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