In the times so many lady veterinarians competing for fame and money only a handful have achieved like Dr. Dee Thornell and we can see why. One time she is occupied treating patients in the room of a well-equipped facility another time she is making house calls in the remotest of Alaska. Despite the adversity of nature and sub-zero temperature, she is not one to shy away from making her journey to the remote doors by horses, carriage, or on foot. Dr. Thornell stars in two seasons of Animal Planet show “Dr. Dee Alaska Vet.” Follow with us as we explore Dr. Thornell’s biography details like her age, net worth, family, married life, divorce, and her current husband.
Personal Life: Dr. Thornell is married. Who is her Husband?
Dr. Thornell was married to Chuck Sanderson for seven years. Although the first marriage did not last forever it served as a lesson to do one better. As they say, the second time the charm. Dr. Thornell is currently married to Kenneth Rodriguez.
The couple first met back in 2005 and tied the knot in 2007. The pair is blissfully married now. Kenneth works as head of maintenance for several buildings owned by the State of Alaska, during the other time he heads out flying in remotes of Alaska. He is a commercial pilot operator qualified to fly under instrument flight rules. Time to time and often he helps Dr. Thornell to attend patients in the remote parts of Alaska. Dr. Thornell also holds a pilot license which Ken had to convince her to take flying lessons. She had her first solo flight on December 7 of 2013.
In 13 years as a married couple, Dr. Thornell and Ken have no children. Meanwhile, Dr. Thornell has a son Jesse James Sanderson from her ex-husband, Chuck Sanderson.
Although many of us will assume Jesse who is in his 20’s to follow her footsteps, it has not been the case. He looks for a career in auto body repair and hopes to open his own shop in Anchorage, Alaska. In the past, he pushed for a career in motocross racing, but after breaking too many bones, he ended up giving up.
Dr. Dee Thornell Birthdate, Age, Ethnicity, Star Sign
Deanna Thornell was born on July 29, 1958, in Ohio, United States America. Born to parents Leonard Thornell and Geraldine Thornell, she is 61 years now. She is American and belongs to caucasian ethnicity. Her star sign is Leo.
Dr. Thornell is the youngest of four children from her parents. She was raised alongside her siblings Jerrie, Pam and Richard Thornell. Her mother was a typical housewife and a farmer. And her father served as a Marine in the second world war. After retirement, he mastered in tinkering and worked as a mechanist.
Dr. Thornell received her early education in Ohio and moved to Kalamazoo when she was in second grade. However, her city life soon came to end due to a family tragedy. Her older brother, Richard died at the age of 20, in 1967, fighting for the country in Vietnam. In the aftermath, her father decided to walk out of city life. Dr. Thornell moved to Beulah, a village in Benzonia, Michigan alongside her sister Pam Thornell.
Her first home in Benzonia was a motel which her father had bought. There in the country setting Dr. Thornell was raised free-spirited. Her father would let her wrench, drive tractors, pound nails the job considered suited for men. Meanwhile, her village adventure grew her affinity towards horses. She learned to ride horses and gained her jockey’s license at the age of 13.
Dr. Dee Thornell Education
Dr. Thornell attended Benzie Central High School. She was an excellent student and graduated top of her class. Other than focusing on her academics she was the student council president and originator of the first school store, which sold candy bars and school supplies to earn money for homecoming and library carpet. She received a four-year scholarship for her college education.
While still pursuing a veterinary degree, she put in 20 hours a week under former Benzonia veterinarian Russell Wagner to get into vet school. She received her DVM degree from Michigan State University of Veterinary Medicine and earned her doctorate in 1981.
Career & Progression
After her veterinary degree, Dr. Thornell worked at Waverly Animal Hospital in Lansing, Michigan. Dr. Thornell came to Alaska in 1982. Her unlikely journey was due to her boyfriend who asked her to join in Alaska. Although the relationship did not last, she ended up staying in Alaska. During the early years, she started as a mobile veterinarian riding her pickup truck around Cantwell, Circle City & Delta Junction. Besides treating animals, she would perform spay and neutering. She later moved into an apartment clinic.
In 1996 Dr. Thornell moved her facility to the current location in Fairbanks, Alaska. Currently, she owns and runs an 11,000 square-foot facility which includes Animal House Veterinary Hospital, Noah’s Ark, and Muttessori School for Dogs. In the veterinarian career that has spanned over several decades, Dr. Thornell has sprayed and neutered over 36,000 animals.
Dr. Dee Alaska Vet
Dr. Dee Thornell made her TV in Animal Planet show “Dr.Dee Alaska Vet.” She oversees all kinds of patients, from typical pets like dogs, cats to exotic cases like snakes, owl, macaws, eagles, and even occasional wild animals like moose, bear, elephants. She joined the shown on Nov 7, 2015, and appeared until 2016. The show was not renewed after two seasons. During the run-in, Dr. Dee was seen providing service at her highly equipped Animal House Veterinary Hospital in Fairbanks, Alaska also she visits remote villages using a small plane, four-wheeler, or a horse and carriage.
Dr. Dee Thornell Net Worth
As of now, Dr. Dee Thornell has a net worth estimated to be $2M.