Dr. Ligon to speak about Iditarod

Dr. Barry Ligon inspects a dog running the Iditarod in the 1960s. (Submitted)

Dr. Barry Ligon will present an informative slide show presentation at the Portland Public Library about his experiences as a volunteer veterinarian with the Iditarod in Anchorage, Alaska.

Dr. Ligon was born and raised on a farm in Oak Grove, Tenn. and attended Portland schools from first through 12th grade, where his mother, Lila, was a teacher. He graduated with the class of 1960 from Sumner County High School (now Portland High School). He earned his pre-veterinary requirements from UTK and his Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Auburn University. He was a practicing veterinarian in Chattanooga until his recent retirement.

Dr. Ligon participated in the Iditarod in Anchorage, Alaska as a volunteer veterinarian two different years in the 1960’s. He has also worked other races in Canada and the United States since that time. His duties were to be sure that the dogs received good care. The dogs were inspected for any health concerns at each of the 20 checkpoints in the approximately 1,000 mile race from Anchorage to Nome.

One of the interesting parts of the experience for him was in seeing how people and animals live and survive in the frozen north. The veterinarians were transported along the race course in small planes flown by volunteers known as the Iditarod Air Force.

The public is welcome and invited to attend this event at 4 p.m. on Thursday, March 10. Dr. Ligon will also be answering questions after his presentation.

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