You didn't see his name in the headlines. That's because longtime Kenai resident Donald Regan "Donnie" Morgan was a behind-the-scenes kind of guy who didn't seek recognition for himself or his accomplishments.
His unexpected death earlier this week at the age of 52 leaves a void in his community.
It says much about the man that he was able to turn his avocations into vocations. He joined the Kenai Fire Department as a volunteer and stayed to make it a career. An avid golfer, he joined his father in running the Kenai Golf Course and Cafe after retiring from the fire department in 1996. He remained a partner in the family business, Morgan Steel Inc.
During his 20 years with the Kenai Fire Department, he worked his way through the ranks becoming Kenai's fire marshal and then assistant fire chief. He is credited not only with playing a key role in training programs and community fire prevention programs, but also with instilling pride in the department.
But worth noting even more than his professional accomplishments for which he received many commendations is the kind of man he was -- the kind who never forgot you, the kind who treated you well no matter who you were, the kind everyone liked immediately, the kind who knew the importance of family and friends, the kind who could be counted on. He was a genuinely straightforward, fun-loving, nice guy, who didn't have an enemy in the world.
In a transient society, Donnie Morgan was as solid and stable as a rock. He chose to stay and raise his children in the town in which he grew up. He was married to his wife, Carol Anne, for 32 years. He was loved and respected by all who knew him.
In a world that's too short on both love and respect, that's no small accomplishment. Donnie Morgan didn't make headlines, but he did make the community a better place to live. He will be missed. Our sincere condolences to his family and many friends.
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