Dr. Epp along with his wife, Sherry, moved to Independence in June of 1974 immediately after graduating from Kansas State University with his Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree. He came to accept a job offer as associate veterinarian at what was then Hays Animal Hospital, working with Dr. Robert Hays who had built the practice and buildings in the early ‘50’s. Within a year, however, Dr. Hays encountered health issues that caused him to decide to sell the practice. While owning a business just a year out of school had not been Dr.Epp’s plan, it was an opportunity he chose to accept, and so assumed ownership on September 1, 1975.
Obtaining his Doctor Of Veterinary Medicine degree was the fulfillment of a dream that began for Dr. Epp in 6th grade. Throughout his childhood, Dr. Epp wanted a horse, but since the family lived in town, his parents vetoed the horse idea. One day in 6th grade, Dr. Epp was riding a friend’s horse when he fell off and broke his wrist. When his parents realized that, in spite of the broken wrist, he still wanted a horse, they gave in. That first horse prompted Dr. Epp’s desire to become a veterinarian. He has continued his enjoyment of not only horses, but all of the variety of animals that have been a part of his life personally and professionally.
Dr. Epp's life philosophy is guided by his compassion for people and animals, and by his belief that his purpose is to serve others. His practice is based on honesty, fairness, integrity, and the best service he can give. He expects the same from his staff. Dr. Epp’s love for and faith in God has created a deep desire to participate in mission work. This desire has led him to numerous short-term mission trips to Mexico, Haiti, Nicaragua and Honduras. Since 1998, Dr. Epp has been involved with Christian Veterinary Mission and has participated in at least 12 trips to Haiti to help train local veterinary care providers there. Dr. Epp served on the board of advisors for Christian Veterinary Mission for 8 years. He has also brought several Haitian care providers to Independence to train with him in the animal hospital. Dr. Epp is also one of the first to respond to local and area disasters for clean-up and rebuilding.
After over 40 years in business at the same location in Independence, Dr. Epp can say that he enjoys his work now as much as ever, and perhaps even more. The variety of work, the challenge, and the satisfaction when an animal enjoys a healthy and happy life continue to be immensely rewarding!