LuAnne Aulepp and Joseph Bulik


When LuAnne Aulepp and her late husband, Joseph Bulik, purchased a barn in the rural mountains of Gilpin County, CO they had no idea how much Colorado State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences would mean to them over the next several years.

LuAnne and Joe saw an ad for the available property, which came with two yearling horses, posted at the local general store. Joe had an undergraduate degree in animal husbandry and LuAnne had loved horses her whole life. They immediately knew the property was perfect for them.

They bought the property and named their yearlings. Joe's was Baryshnikov, and LuAnne's was Joker. They gained a dog along the way as well, whom they named Sabak. Eventually, the animals needed veterinary attention, but there weren't any local animal caregivers in their rural area.

"That's when we really got to know the folks at the CSU vet hospital," LuAnne says.

Baryshnikov was suffering from laminitis, Joker had skin problems, and Sabak had thyroid problems. LuAnne and Joe developed a very close relationship with the staff at CSU's veterinary facilities over the next several years.

When it came time for LuAnne and Joe to create their wills, they realized that their animals had meant just as much to them as their children did. In honor of their animals and the excellent care they had received over the years, LuAnne and Joe generously decided to leave half of their estate to the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at CSU.

At first, they had no idea how to do such a thing, so they called the school and asked how to leave a gift in their wills. "They showed us how to set up the gift," LuAnne says. "It was really very easy."

LuAnne and Joe decided to set up their gift so that funds will go where the need is greatest. "That way, we don't have to decide on specific details or worry that the place we designated our gift doesn't exist anymore," LuAnne says.

"The vet school was such a wonderful resource for us," LuAnne says. "Being a planned giver is a natural way to give back."