New senior center made possible through Doty's generosity. Opportunities exist for others in community to contribute to this landmark project.
By Jeff Wells
Fort Morgan City Manager
Shortly after I moved to Fort Morgan in 2007 I met Gene Doty. I will never forget that meeting. We went to inspect and discuss options related to boundary location issues on a property he was selling. While walking through a small grove of trees we came upon a homeless man sleeping. The man was startled, and Gene quickly put him at ease, reached into his pocket, gave him a $10 bill and told him to go get something hot to drink. Since that first meeting I have always been impressed with Gene’s desire to make Fort Morgan a better place. I have heard countless testimonials from other citizens, how Gene has helped them over the years. One example of his generosity includes providing down payment assistance out of his own pocket for homes to new teachers moving to the community.
In addition to what Gene has given to his community, he has also given liberally to his country. Gene served in the Army in WWII and was a driving force in the local squadron of the Civil Air Patrol. In his professional career he partnered on the construction of many buildings and homes in Fort Morgan.
In November 2018, Gene approached me with his final project. He said at his age (93) it was time to retire and he wanted to do one last building project that would help the community. From the beginning he wanted to do something special for the senior citizens in Fort Morgan. We spent a lot of time working through his ideas which included renovation of the current Senior Center.
With the help of George Cromwell, Bob Elrick and city staff we were able to put together a project Gene wanted and we felt we could present to the public and City Council. We were all grateful for the generous and unequivocal support of the Council for the construction of a new Senior Center which is located at 307 Linda Street.
To make sure the project would be funded Gene donated $806,000 of his own money toward the construction of a $1,300,000 project. Gene’s donation combined with other generous contributions from contractors working on the project is leading to a fantastic new facility for the public and saving local taxpayer money.
There are still several opportunities for other members of the community interested in participating in the project. Donations will qualify as tax exempt and will greatly assist with some remaining costs such as landscaping, furnishings and programming features for the public. If you wish to make a monetary or other contribution toward the project, please send an email to SeniorCenterDonations@cityoffortmorgan.com or call Sharon Velder at (970) 542-3973.
The Gene Doty Senior Center will be the capstone to an amazing legacy provided by a selfless and generous man. I pay my honest and sincere respect to Gene and all he has done throughout his life to make our community a better place.
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