Father’s Day Tributes for Two Compassionate Dads

Posted by 2 years ago | Permalink | Comments (3)

Our fathers play a vital role in shaping our lives and the way we see the world. In honour of Father’s Day, we’re paying tribute to two very special dads who have gone out of their way to protect and defend animals in need and taught their kids that kindness truly is a virtue.

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University of Leicester professor John Benyon, 63, was nominated by his daughter Danielle, who said of her parents, “It was their influence that helped me become the animal lover I am”. When John learned of an impending badger cull in the area, he refused to just sit around and moan about it – he knew he had to take action. He made weekly donations to groups on the ground, wrote to his MP and organised a boycott of his local Morrisons after he learned that it was supporting the cull. John and his wife adopted a vegetarian diet during the 2001 foot-and-mouth crisis after being appalled that animals were being treated as disposable commodities, and they haven’t touched meat since. 

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Chris Burkes, 54, is a painter, decorator and father of seven from King’s Lynn. He was nominated by his daughter Lina, who wrote us a moving letter describing how important it was to her father that he raise his family vegetarian, later transitioning them all to a vegan diet, and how they were taught to respect animals. Lina recalls, “Pretty much the only thing I’ve ever seen my dad cry about is animals who he has loved and lost or the exploitation of animals in general”. Over the years, Chris has offered shelter and relief to many animals in need, including countless birds, baby hedgehogs, rescued cats and all manner of other waifs and strays. He also started a petition for the release of Marius the giraffe from the Copenhagen Zoo. 

We sent both John and Chris a huge box of vegan chocolates to thank them for being the definition of good dads! If someone in your family is notable for his or her compassion, let us know in the comments.



  • jill commented on June 16, 2014 at 11:49 pm

    humane and ethical treatment of animals even those destined for
    the table
    is the sign of an advanced civilisation
    we are npt a barbarous people
    so lets treat animals properly!

  • Linda Johnston commented on June 23, 2014 at 11:10 pm

    Breaks my heart! If this slaughter MUST go on PLZ TREAT THE POOR ANIMALS WITH DIGNITY AND KINDNESS. These workers really seem 2b enjoying torturing these poor creatures that have done nothing wrong. Are they the dregs that can’t get jobs anywhere else. CAMERAS MUST BE INSTALLED IN ALL THESE HELLHOLES AVAILABLE 2 THE PUBLIC AT ALL TIMES. Only need 2b in one room 2c footage of every square inch of the places of doom. Plus workers should not be on bonus work.

  • Maggie Calvey commented on August 24, 2014 at 8:41 am

    Words can’t explain how I feel, despair and sadness, but know how important it is to show this utter cruelty to people, to let them be aware of the consequences of eating meat.

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