Dorian De Long
All who knew Dorian experienced his irrepressible spirit, hard work on behalf of others, and capacity for channeling his tremendous energy into action.
His heart's delight was home with his beloved wife Shaylyn and daughter Evie, where he loved nothing more than being with them, gardening, playing, caring for their Boston Terriers, being with friends and taking in the sweetness of life.
Shaylyn writes: "To say Dorian was passionate about life is an understatement. He loved music, the arts, education and most of all, us. Our daughter Genevieve (Evie) was the light of his life! He was her rock as well as her goofy playmate. They loved to work on art - read comics - and watch Steven Universe and Teen Titans Go. His ability to make her laugh was magical. A funny, googly-eyed look from her dad would send Evie into a laughing frenzy. He was my best friend! We were a unit and complete with one another. He made me laugh daily with his jokes, which were a lot like Fozzy the Bear. I would always laugh and then say, 'Waaka Waaka!' His eyes made me melt with their intensity. His hugs made Evie and I both feel loved and safe. Dorian's love for us was so pure and unconditional."
Dorian's life calling was to education. He earned a Master’s in Education with an emphasis in Humanities from Colorado College and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from Metropolitan State College of Denver.
As a social studies teacher at Thornton High School, he imbued his students with the ability to rise, take up the art of learning and thoroughly enjoy their accomplishments. They loved him, whether learning American History, applied civics or swing dancing. In fact, a contingent showed up in their finest to cheer him in the parking lot as he emerged from his wedding!
As an advocate, Dorian lobbied for the introduction and passage of House Bill 1273 (Merrifield/Spence & Steadman) encouraging all Colorado Public Schools to provide education in the visual and performing arts and directing the State Board of Education to recognize the importance of the arts in development of future graduation guidelines. The bill was signed into law on May 18, 2010 by Governor Ritter.
The leadership of the Colorado Education Association writes: “Dorian was a devoted, caring teacher in the Adams 12 Five Star Schools district for many years who found his calling to lead in the fight for professional educator rights and opportunity for all students as president of the District Twelve Educators’ Association. After outstanding service for DTEA members, he had recently begun valuable staff work for Jefferson County Education Association (JCEA), further strengthening the voice of teachers and students in Jeffco. Dorian touched the lives of thousands of Colorado educators and was a cheerful warrior for public education. We are inspired to carry on the vital advocacy work for Colorado educators and students that meant so much to him.”