Last night (Wednesday), Pat Gibbons, Dawn Farm’s Medical Director and psychiatrist died suddenly. We’re stunned. He was just at Spera on Tuesday night seeing clients. It’s a terrible loss for Dawn Farm and our community.
Any words I can come up with feel entirely inadequate, but here goes.
He was a model of the power of recovery. He paid his debt forward as much as anyone I’ve ever seen.
- He was a mentor and source of support for hundreds of recovering men.
- He volunteered for Dawn Farm in several capacities over the years. His contributions were always quiet, but always important.
- He provided free and inexpensive medical and psychiatric care to countless clients.
- He helped establish and disseminate a protocol that helped benzodiazepine and alcohol dependent patients safely detox in non-medical settings.
Pat established himself as the most respected addiction psychiatrist in the region and served at University of Michigan, the Veterans Administration, Community Support and Treatment Services, the Health Professional Recovery Program, Pain Recovery Solutions and Dawn Farm.
Pat interacted with ALL of his patients in a manner that conveyed hope, many of whom had been discarded and neglected by other systems.
Facebook is being flooded with comments from friends, former patients and colleagues remembering his kindness, intelligence, wisdom, compassion, humility, sense of humor, patience and gratitude. People are giving him credit for their recovery, their careers and much more.
In the midst of all this, he was a proud father of six children.
We are grateful to have had him as part of our family. His death is going to be a terrible loss for the community. I can’t think of anyone who has done as much to improve medical and psychiatric care for our most vulnerable community members. We will miss him terribly. He was a very good man.