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A Loss In The Duke Family

Sad news for the Dawkins family.

AAC Basketball Tournament - Quarterfinals - UCF v Memphis
 FORT WORTH, TX - MARCH 11: Head coach Johnny Dawkins of the UCF Knights looks on in the second half against the Memphis Tigers during the American Athletic Conference Mens Basketball Tournament Quarterfinals at Dickies Arena on March 11, 2022 in Fort Worth, Texas. Memphis defeated UCF 85-69.
Photo by Ron Jenkins/Getty Images

Generally speaking, old news is old news and there’s not much point in plowing the same ground twice.

There are exceptions though. Sometimes you just hear things that you want to pass along because other people might not have heard it either.

In this case, it’s a loss in the Duke family that happened over the summer: Johnny Dawkins, Sr. passed away in July.

Most people who were following Duke in the 1980’s got to know Johnny Dawkins, Jr., when he was at Mackin High and on his way to Duke. He, as much as anyone, helped to lay the fondant for what we know as Duke Basketball now.

Turns out Johnny Sr. was an interesting guy too. He was born in Silverstreet, South Carolina. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about his hometown: “Silverstreet is a town in Newberry County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 162 at the 2010 census. Arguably its biggest tourist attraction is its Thunderbolt siren, tested once a week for three minutes, and the last of its kind in Newberry County.”

Sounds like it was a good idea to get out, as his parents moved to DC, which became his real hometown.

Dawkins played basketball briefly at Elizabeth City State, then attended Howard, and ended up becoming a Green Beret. You’d have to think that he and Mike Krzyzewski bonded.

Anyway, here is his full obituary. Our deepest sympathies to Johnny and his family. He sounds like a wonderful man.