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November 17, 1935 – August 14, 2021

Dr. Tom Hagerty died Saturday, August 14, 2021, at the age of 85 years old.

Dr. Hagerty was born November 17, 1935, in Waseca, MN.

He graduated from Sacred Heart Catholic School in Waseca, MN.   He attended both St. Thomas University and The University of Minnesota where he graduated from the School of Veterinarian Medicine in 1959 as a Doctor in Veterinarian Medicine.

Dr. Hagerty married Shirley Kelling on December 29, 1956, in Waseca, MN. Together they raised five children.

Dr. Hagerty practiced both large and small animal health in St. Michael, MN, for over twenty-five years.    He was the executive director of the MN State Board of Animal Health from 1984 until his retirement as the State Veterinarian in 2001.   He then served as the lead MN State Fair Veterinarian for fifteen years.   He was also President of the MN Veterinarian Medical Association and the United States Animal Health Association.   Dr. Hagerty served on the St. Michael-Albertville School Board for twenty-five years, Frankfort Township Board, and the St. Michael City Council.   He was also very active in many agricultural organizations.

Dr. Hagerty was preceded in death by his parents, Ray and Florence Hagerty, his brother Jim Hagerty, brother-in-law Silvio Rossi, sister and brother-in-law Lynne and Dave Swenson.

He is survived by his wife: Shirley of sixty-four years; children: Pat (Tim) Dusbabek, Joe (Susie) Hagerty, Mary (David) Carberry, Tom (Susan) Hagerty and Ann (Chuck) Johnson; grandchildren: Elizabeth (Seth) Stomberg, Kevin Dusbabek, Hilary (Mitch) Gracik, Carl (Shelby) Dusbabek, Derek (Stephanie) Hagerty, Ryan (Jenna) Hagerty, Breanna (Andrew) Semo, Maureen Carberry, Brenna Carberry, Thomas Hagerty, Mariah Hagerty, Anthony Hagerty, Kealy Johnson, Charlie  Johnson and 7 great grandchildren; sister: Mary Rossi; sister-in-law: Donna Hagerty; brother and sister-in-law: John and Mary Kelling; many nieces, nephews and friends.

A Mass of Christian Burial for Dr. Tom Hagerty will be held on Friday, August 20, 2021 at 11:00 A.M. at The St. Michael Catholic Church in St. Michael, MN.  Inurnment will follow at The St. Michael Catholic Cemetery.

A visitation will be held on Thursday, August 19 from 4:00 to 8:00 PM.  at The Peterson Chapel St. Michael-Albertville Funeral Home in St. Michael, MN.   Further visitation will be held one hour prior to Mass at the church on Friday morning, August 20th.

Memorial may be sent to:

Minnesota State Fair Foundation

Minnesota Veterinary Medical Association Foundation

Unbound; a lay catholic sponsorship apostolate that is helping children with their education needs in 19 developing counties.

Charity of donor’s choice



19 Guestbook Entries

  1. Mary K Carberry

    My Dad spoke often about family and community. I love hearing/reading memories of my dad from the people who met him maybe only once or knew him for a long time. The sentiments are very comforting. Thank you.

  2. Christine Williams

    Shirley, Joe, Sue and all the family,
    We are so sorry for your loss. Dr. Hagerty was such a wonderful man and will be missed by so many. Sending our love and prayers, Steve and Chris (Jaeb) Williams

  3. Sharon Wessel

    I will miss our yearly times to catch-up with Doc at State Fair. He had been our farm vet for years prior to the Board of Animal Health. We always felt reassurance knowing he was the vet responding to any “after hours” calls. He was so good with exhibitors at the state fair, always quietly working behind the scenes to keep the livestock and people safe. It was with great honor and privilege that I was able to present him with his Minnesota State Fair Life Membership.

  4. Ruth A White

    So sorry for your loss. He was a great man. I enjoyed the exchange of greetings at work. RIP

  5. Shelley Held

    Shirley and family,

    Stan was there to meet Tom with a slanted joke, I’m sure. So many memories ♥️

  6. Julie (Zachman) Fietek

    Hagerty Clan,

    So sorry to hear of your dad’s passing.

    I always remember Tom, Sr.’s great laugh and smile… and teasing! Not to mention his willingness to take an extra kid on camping trips. 😉

    As believers, we know that today your dad sits in the presence of his Father, and oh, how glorious that must be!!!! ❤❤❤

    God’s great love and peace to you and all your family.

    Until that Great Reunion, remember 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. 🙌

  7. Debra (Held) Fant

    For Tom’s family…I have fond remembrance of Dr. Haggerty from my youth and his ability to take on Stan in humor and aggravations they both enjoyed exchanging. I recall Tom as a kind and caring man and am awed to see the impact his work has had for veterinary medicine and for kids around the world and in Wright Co. too. I celebrate his living well and loving you, and hope your grief is gentled by remembering, feeling his values working through each of you, and the satisfaction of his service and faith in action. Bless him on his soul journey and condolences to you Shirley, and all who will miss his presence.

  8. Sharon Hurley

    So sorry to hear that Tom passed away. What a wonderful gentle soul. I first met Tom on my first day on the Board of Animal Health when he came in to interview for the ED job. I knew right away that he was going to get my vote. I didn’t have a clue what I was going to be doing on the Board but I knew right way that he had the wisdom, diplomacy, intelligence and common sense to lead.
    Through the years his friendship has met so much to me. His laugh was infectious. He embodied what veterinary medicine should be.
    Peace and grace to you all.

  9. Jamie

    I’m so sorry to hear about the passing of Tom ! He was a one of a kind gentlemen. My dad and mom always talk highly of Tom and Shirley. I sure enjoyed our talks at the Market Place bakery on cookie day! Your all in my thoughts and Prayers.

  10. Patricia Gries

    Dear Shirley and Family,
    We are very sorry for your loss of your dear husband and father.
    We have wonderful memories of Tom and you, Shirley! I recall how happy my dad was that Tom came to practice in St. Michael and the wonderful addition you two made to the community! I know you were one of the couples in Fr. Gilbert’s young couple’s group in the 60’s!
    We are sorry we cannot attend the wake & Tom’s funeral. We will be with you in prayer. Our Sympathy, John & Patricia Simms Gries

  11. Helen Woodford

    Sorry for your loss

    Prayers 🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏

    Worked at BAH

  12. Jon Dobosenski

    To everyone in the Hagerty Family,
    Janet and I were so sorry to hear about the passing of Mr. Hagerty and wanted you to know that our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who has been touched by this wonderful man. There has always been a tight bond between our families and although distance and time has moved us all around, it can never diminish the love and friendships we have fostered all these years. Mary and I have always been like two peas in a pod growing up and I cherish that bond we have but I also know that it began because of some wonderful parents who guided and raised equally wonderful, caring children. Mr. Hagerty will always have a special place in our hearts and, although we can not be there physically, we want you to know we are still there with you.
    God Bless you and hold you during this difficult time.
    With Love,
    Jon and Janet

  13. Jerry Torrison

    It’s hard to imagine a Minnesota without Dr. Hagerty. His commanding, but gentle presence has been so important for so long. When I used to check in with other state vets years ago on animal health issues, the first question I often got was, “What does Tom think?” I learned to start with him before moving forward on whatever project was at hand. He was always so kind and fair. And a healthy tease. Miss him already. My condolences to the family and all the community.

  14. Jan Jahnke

    Our sympathy to you and your family! Thinking of you all! Love, your new neighbors, Dean and Jan Jahnke

  15. Christopher Kelling

    One of my favorite uncles. He will ve missed.

  16. Luke Cain

    Tom was not only our vet, but a very good friend. He was a dairyman’s best choice in a veterinarian in Wright or Hennepin county. He will be missed and added to our prayers.

  17. Catherine Mahoney and family

    Our sympathy to the Hagerty family at the loss of husband father and grandfather. Tom was such a kind friendly man.

  18. James Gibson

    It is with sadness in learning of Tom’s death. He was a very active supporter of the Minnesota Agricultural Interpretive Center-Farmamerica located near Waseca and across the road from Tom’s family farm. He was a very active and helpful advocate in our work with the Minnesota Legislature. I made a recording of an interview with Roy Lukken, the farmer upon whose land Farmamerica was created. Roy was asked to advise the current board, including Tom, on how he felt about the progress of the Farmamerica project. He went on to tell a story about teaching Tom how to test whether a fence was hooked up to electricity….and how fast they both could run when Tom learned the lesson. I visited Tom several times while he was lead veterinarian at the State Fair. He was always genuine and expansive about the role his office played in the success of the livestock shows there.

  19. Shelley Patnode

    I’m so sorry to hear the Greatest vets of all time has passed! I’ll never forget him and Dr Kunkle tending to cows, calves, horses, cats and dogs and those darn pugs on our farm! Having gone to school with his kids and how great you all are! RIP Tom, heaven is lucky to gain you💟 Fondly ,
    Shelley Patnode



  1. Former MN State Veterinarian Passes Away | Red River Farm Network - […] Former Minnesota State Veterinarian Dr. Tom Hagerty passed away on Saturday. The Waseca, Minnesota-native as 85 years old. Hagerty…

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