A long-time Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium veterinarian has died.
Holly Reed – known as “Dr. Holly” – died Saturday of natural causes, according to the zoo.
Reed, 56, was the head veterinarian when the zoo’s Animal Health Care facility was built in 2003. She started working at Point Defiance in 1995, and was a part-time veterinarian there when she died.
Reed was a species survival plan adviser for polar bears and red wolves.
“She wasn’t afraid to get into the trenches,” said Will Waddell, the zoo’s Red Wolf Program coordinator, who also manages the nationwide red wolf Species Survival Plan. “She loved what she did.”
Reed also had a “great sense of humor,” he said.
She was known in the zoological and veterinary communities for her problem-solving, dedication to conservation and knowledge, said Gary Geddes, director of the Zoological and Environmental Education Division of Metro Parks Tacoma. Strangers would approach him at conferences to talk about her work, he said.
Reed was a talented mentor and a thoughtful, giving person, zoo general curator Karen Goodrowe Beck said.
A memorial service for Reed will be at 2 p.m. Dec. 1 at University Presbyterian Church, 4540 15th Ave. NE, Seattle.