William David LaFevers, clinical assistant professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Nursing and Health Studies and an advocate for his profession, died Feb. 15 after a sudden, brief illness. He was 55.
A memorial will be held 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. March 10 at the University Plaza Hotel and Conference Center, Nebraska Room, in Springfield, Missouri. The UMKC School of Nursing and Health Studies is holding a memorial from 11 a.m. to noon March 14 at Diastole Scholars’ Center.
LaFevers joined UMKC in 2010, and since 2016, he served as director of the school’s Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. He received a diploma in nursing from Burge School of Nursing, Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Southwest Baptist University, and MSN and Doctor of Nursing Practice from UMKC School of Nursing and Health Studies.
“Dave was a kind, gentle person who was willing to take on any task,” said Ann Cary, dean of the UMKC School of Nursing and Health Studies. “Students loved him, as did the faculty and staff at the school. He was equal parts nurse practitioner-clinician, published scholar, educator, collaborator and policy advocate for nursing practice and patients. We will miss his ‘can-do’ attitude at the school and university.”
LaFevers was recognized with national and state nursing awards. In 2015, the American Association of Colleges in Nursing chose him as one of eight nurse educators nationally for its Faculty Policy Intensive cohort. In 2014, he received the American Association of Nurse Practitioners State Award for Excellence for Missouri. He also was selected as a Fellow in the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
LaFevers served in leadership positions in the Missouri Nurses Association, including chair of the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse Special Interest Group and chair of the Northwest Region.
LaFevers is survived by his wife, Jan, an adjunct faculty member in the UMKC School of Education, and their daughter, Abby LaFevers Ayers.
“He felt that everyone was family and every moment was a teachable moment,” Jan LaFevers said. “Bringing value to any situation was his purpose.“