Memorial held for ‘Dr. Doug’

Published 4:00 am Saturday, October 17, 2015

A Memorial Service for Dr. R. Douglas Hawkins (1935-2015) was held Friday afternoon at the Claudia Crosby Theater on the campus of Troy University.

Members of the Troy University family and a board base of community members and leaders came to remember “Dr. Doug.”

Throughout the program, the one word that was most often used in regard to Hawkins was “impact.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

One after another, Hawkins’ friends spoke of the impact that he had on their lives, on the university and on the community.

Lamar Higgins, a longtime friend who served with Hawkins on the Troy University Board of Trustees, said he was a “great man and a true Trojan.”

“Doug Hawkins was a complex man,” Higgins said. “He had a wide range of interests. He loved Troy University; he loved learning; and he loved the students. As a world traveler, he was excited that Troy University has students from 80 nations on campus.”

Higgins said Hawkins did things his way and “his way” impacted the university and the community in a positive way.

“Doug Hawkins had a huge impact on Troy University,” Troy University Chancellor Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr. said. “He was the Father of the Greek Fraternities and a part of all the Greek system and of the globalization of the university.

“Doug always had big ideas. He was not interested in little ideas, only big ideas.”

Hawkins said those big ideas included the move from Division II athletics to Division I.

“There will never be a Trojan who stands as tall as Doug Hawkins. He will forever be a part of Troy University.”

Larry Blakeney, former Troy University head football coach, described Hawkins as “a man’s man” who always had the best interest of Troy University at heart.

“He was a strong and dedicated supporter of Troy University and Troy University athletics and he will forever be remembered,” Blakeney said.

Mack Gibson, personal and professional friend, said Hawkins was a 14th century Renaissance man in a 20th century body.

“Doug impacted the community in many ways,” he said.

“He was a strong supporter of the arts and was an artist himself. He was a strong, moral Christian and a community servant. He was enthusiastic about the things he believed in and his enthusiasm was contagious.”

Gibson and Hawkins worked together on many projects and being involved in the community was a high priority for Hawkins.

“He was a devoted family man who centered his life around his family,” Gibson said. “If the world is divided into lifters and leaners, then Doug Hawkins was a lifter and he was willing for others to lean on him.”

Gerald O. Dial, Troy University Board of Directors president pro tempore, said Hawkins provided a foundation for others to build upon.

“Few people have had the positive impact that Dr. Doug Hawkins had on Troy University, this city and this state,” he said.

Hawkins leadership in the community was broad based.

He was appointed to the Board of Trustees of Troy State University in 1980 and served until his death. He organized the Greek system at the university and was a strong supporter of academics and athletics.

He operated a veterinary clinic in Troy for 52 years. He was a member of the Troy Rotary Club, the Troy Jaycees and the Pike County Pioneer Museum. He served as president of the Pike County Chamber of Commerce, director of the Davis Theater in Montgomery and served on the Troy-Pike Cultural Arts Center board.

Hawkins served as a deacon at First Baptist Church and as Sunday school director.

He and his wife, Rachel, have three children, Martha Lynn Drinkard, Holly Anderson and Robert Hawkins, Jr.

After the passing of his wife, Rachel, in 2006, Hawkins married Dean Scarbrough in 2009.