Doug Dugan, American University Eagles #10 player, circa 1980s.
Doug Dugan & Dugan's family dog, Molly, Christmas 2015.
I met Doug Dugan 12 years ago when I began working for his wife Deborah. Over this past summer, I was fortunate to get to know him even better when I interviewed him for an article I was writing. Then in mid July 2016, Doug passed away unexpectedly, stunning and saddening a vast group of family, friends, and fans. Just as suddenly, Deborah needed an obituary written for their chosen mortuary's web site. I buzzed over the next day and for a good part of the afternoon, sat at their kitchen table with my laptop, amidst a beautiful gathering of assorted grieving loved ones. As I shared in their grief, I also experienced the joy of learning more about someone who meant the world to so many. Doug's parents, in-laws, daughters and wife graced me with stories about Doug, those precious moments that count up to a life well-lived.
With their collective memories, I strived to compose a fitting tribute, one that celebrated Doug's 58 years making his mark on this Earth. I hoped to capture both his genuine spirit and generous nature, putting my personal spin on it, with the utmost respect and of course, humor. The positive feedback I received assured me that I succeeded in my efforts. I can't think of a better way to show my love and appreciation for knowing you and being included in your family, Doug Dugan!
"I would rather have 30 minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special." ~ Shelby/Steel Magnolias
I credit Doug for officially kicking off my obituary writing business. Doug was an award-winning soccer champion so "kicking off my business" carries even more significance. I know he is laughing his a** off at this metaphor so props Doug Dugan.
Thank you for helping me, in your own irreverent way, use my words to champion others. You've always been an instigator...is one of the many truths I learned about you, my friend...and I'm right there with you!
"May your neighbors respect you, trouble neglect you, the angels protect you, & heaven accept you." ~ Our own Irishman Doug Dugan