Dr James B. Russell
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Dr James B. Russell

June 30, 1951 - September 20, 2009

Dr James B. Russell

June 30, 1951 - September 20, 2009


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Obituary for Dr James B. Russell

MANHEIM-Dr. James B. “Jim” Russell, 58, of Snells Bush Road, Town of Manheim, passed away peacefully on Sunday evening, September 20, 2009 in the comfort of his home. He was born on June 30, 1951 in Livermore, California, son of the late Lincoln A. and Mary Arlene (Murphy) Russell and graduated from St. Johnsville. He furthered his education receiving a doctorate degree in microbiology from Cornell University. Dr. Russell’s first goal was to be a veterinarian but this career choice did not persist. As a “pre-vet” at Cornell University, he took introductory microbiology and changed his major. In 1953, the Russell family came to New York and purchased the family farm, Burke Meadow Farm on Snells Bush Road in March of 1954, operating it ever since. In 1967, the family purchased the neighboring farm, then owned by Paul and Agnes Scanlon. The farm prospered but a fire in the summer of 1970 destroyed the main barn. A new free-stall barn was built in great effort in the winter of 1970 and spring of 1971. The farm meant everything to the family and the farm is still successful. Farming was Jim’s passion in life, and so was dealing with cows. He was last employed with the USDA in Ithaca as a microbiologist. Dr. Russell’s first job was an Assistant Professor in the Department of animal Science at the University of Illinois, and his first teaching assignments included Intermediary Metabolism of Animals and Microbiology of the GI Tract. When the USDA established a new position at Cornell University in 1981, Dr. Russell returned to his alma mater. He taught microbiology of the rumen in the Department of Animal Science at Cornell from 1982-1990. In 1991, he moved to the Department of Microbiology. He has performed research on many aspects of rumen microbiology, trained more than 10 graduate students and published more than 185 journal articles. He was a member of the American Academy of Microbiology, was a recipient of the American Feed Industry Award, has received numerous USDA awards and was regularly sought as a speaker. From 1991 to 1997 he was General Chairman of the Rumen Function Conference. He has served on the editorial boards of Microbiology, Applied Environmental Microbiology and Journal of Dairy Science. Jim loved the outdoors and also canoeing and kayaking. Survivors include his son: Aaron Russell of Rochester; a cousin: David Russell and wife Christine of Frankfort; friends: Mr. and Mrs. Robert Jewell of Ithaca; special caretakers: Sekou Camara and wife Helen and Laurel Kerber; and Mr. and Mrs. Craig Leiphart of Little Falls who managed Dr. Russell’s farm for many years. He was preceded in death by a brother, Joseph Russell. Traditional funeral services will be held on Thursday September 24th, 2009 at 11am at the Enea Family Funeral Home, 24 W. Monroe St., Little Falls (823-2424). Relatives and friends may pay their respects at the funeral home on Thursday from 10am until 11 am, prior to the service. Interment will follow in Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Frankfort in the Russell family plot. Please consider memorial offerings to the Philanthropic Organization Lighthouse Loft, Inc c/o 8148 State Route 5, Little Falls, NY 13365. The family would like to thank the staff of Hospice and Palliative Care, Inc. of New Hartford for their kindness and compassion.

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