Friday March 7, 2014
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Gp back in our history as far as you want and you will find that schools, places where our offspring could learn what we knew and more, happened because a community developed and decided to support the education of our youth and the financial committment to their educators.
Not the state, the Community.
Many decades later, in a small community in the heart of Arizona, Gila County desired to create a bastion of higher learning and established the Gila County Community College.
That establishment is a history you need to explore and understand. How fragile it was. How seriously underfunded it was. How few heroes came to it's rescue and fought to make it better.
90 plus years ago, a Gila County hero of education was born. I don't believe he ever intended to be a hero of education. His gentle demeanor and soft spoken ways would never have been considered as influential in political circles....but he was and his words were and today....we wouldn't have a community college if he hadn't been convincing.
Today I learned that my friend, mentor and champion of education, died last friday.
I could write volumnes about his passion from our converstations. He wrote volumnes about it in books over the last few years. You should know his name.....but many probably do not.
Please, if you love the idea of one man making a difference, reference and remember the name; Doyle Coffey.
Austin Doyle Coffey was his given name and no one person in Gila County is more responsible for Higher Education opportunities than he.
I'll miss you friend. Dan.
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