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In memoriam: Swine nutritionist Kees de Lange loses battle with melanoma

Kees de Lange, professor of swine nutrition in the Department of Animal Biosciences of the University of Guelph, died Aug. 1 after an eight-year battle with melanoma.

Kees de Lange, professor of swine nutrition in the Department of Animal Biosciences of the University of Guelph, died Aug. 1 after an eight-year battle with melanoma. He had joined the university in 1994.

He was a member of the department executive and focused on research strategies. He published more than 150 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters, and presented more than 130 papers at major swine nutrition extension events. He was the 2010 recipient of the Canadian Society of Animal Science Excellence in Nutrition and Meat Quality award, the 2012 recipient of the American Feed Industry Association Award in Non-ruminant Nutrition Research from the American Society of Animal Science, and the 2013 recipient of the OAC Alumni Association Distinguished Extension Award. He supervised more than 50 graduate students and post-doctoral fellows, many of which have secured leading positions in the animal feed industry or faculty positions in leading universities.

A funeral mass will be celebrated at the Basilica of Our Lady in Guelph at 11 a.m. Aug. 5

Cornelis (Kees) Franciscus Maria de Lange passed away peacefully at his home in Guelph, Ontario, on Aug. 1 surrounded by his loving family. He died after an eight-year struggle with melanoma. Kees had a love of God and a love of life; his greatest joy was his family. He is survived by his wife, Deirdre Conway, children, Samuel, Mark, Julia and Anna (Guelph, Ontario) and siblings Wim, Piet, Loek, Truus (The Netherlands) and Hans (Germany). Also mourning his loss are many relatives in Canada and Europe. He was predeceased by his parents, Cornelis de Lange and Petronella Roskam, his parents-in-law, Patrick and Mary Conway, and his nephew, Coen de Lange.

Kees was born on April 19, 1961, in De Weere, The Netherlands, and grew up in the farming community before beginning his studies at the University of Wageningen. In 1985, he immigrated to Canada to pursue a PhD in animal nutrition at the University of Alberta. After completing his degree he began a distinguished career in agriculture, working in the Ontario feed industry and applied research at the Prairie Swine Centre in Saskatchewan, prior to becoming a professor of Swine Nutrition at the University of Guelph in 1994.

Always passionate about his work, Kees made a lasting impression as a teacher and mentor to many undergraduate and graduate students, while publishing numerous scientific papers and book chapters, and serving on a number of international committees. Beyond his work, Kees especially enjoyed the Canadian outdoors and trips abroad with his family. He will be fondly remembered for the many hours spent with his family and friends cycling, canoeing, hiking and camping. His family is especially thankful for the compassionate and caring staff at the Grand River Regional Cancer Centre.

Friends are invited to the Gilbert MacIntyre & Son Funeral Home, Hart Chapel, 1099 Gordon Street, Guelph, for visitation 6-9 p.m. Aug. 4. A funeral mass will be celebrated at Basilica of Our Lady Immaculate, 28 Norfolk Street, Guelph, at 11 a.m. Aug. 5. A private family interment will take place at a later time. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the GRRCC or to a charity of your choice. Online condolences can be made at

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