It is with profound sadness that I join the entire college community in mourning the loss of our friend and colleague, Johnny Dollar, well-known and well-respected instructor of history, religion and political science at Pulaski Technical College.
Johnny died Saturday evening from injuries received in an accident that occurred while he was rescuing an injured animal from the highway. It does not surprise me that Johnny risked his own life to save another. He was and will continue to be a hero to many of his students, former students, colleagues, friends and family members.
Johnny brought energy, vibrancy, passion and compassion to his life's work. The abruptness of his death is especially difficult to understand because of the enthusiasm with which he lived his life.
Having joined Pulaski Tech as an adjunct faculty member in 1993, Johnny became a full-time faculty member in 1996 and contributed significantly to the growth and development of the college. He, along with his colleagues, developed the college's history, political science and religion curriculum. He loved teaching and being around his students, and he was a well-deserved recipient of the faculty STAR Award for teaching excellence.
As department chair, Johnny was a servant leader to colleagues who gained immensely from his wise counsel, support and guidance. As a former journalist, he was a tireless advocate of First Amendment rights, helping to organize the college's annual celebration of Constitution Day and bringing many well-known speakers to campus to enhance the learning experience for our students.
Johnny's family was of paramount importance to him. He is survived by his beloved wife, Susan, and twin daughters, Charlotte and Lauralee, all members of the Pulaski Tech family. Please continue to remember them with your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
Johnny's tragic and untimely death serves as a reminder of just how fragile life can be. As we mourn the loss of this great teacher, mentor, colleague and friend, let us also remember to celebrate his extraordinary life and legacy.
Click here for Pulaski Technical College's memorial page for Johnny Dollar.
Dan F. Bakke