Dan Doom passed away on July 27, 2020, due to complications from COVID-19. A man of great character, Dan had a long, loving, and impactful life and made a lasting impression on many lives.
Born in Phoenix March 15, 1942, he was oldest child of Samuel and Esther Doom. He originally lived in Phoenix and later moved to Congress at age 8, where he would live for the rest of his childhood.
Dan attended Wickenburg High School where he participated in football and basketball. He was an all-state lineman his senior year. It should be noted that since there was no after-practice bussing, participants had to find their own way home. For Dan, that typically meant hitchhiking, or oftentimes jumping on the train in Wickenburg and literally jumping off while it was still moving through Congress. Following his high school graduation in 1960, he first attended Phoenix College and later Arizona State University, where he graduated in 1968 with a bachelor's degree. While in college he worked for Standard Oil and Firestone Tire, a tradition carried on by his several of his brothers.
Dan returned to Wickenburg High School in 1968 as a business and accounting teacher. Later on he received a master's degree in education. Dan met his future wife, Patty Cooke, in high school. The two were married one year after graduation on June 27, 1961. They were blessed with their first child Sam in 1968, followed by Andy in 1970, and would later add Danelle, their only daughter, in 1973. He would eventually be the proud grandpa of seven grandchildren, Anne, Steven, Caitlynn, Ryan, Hannah, Austin and Seth.
This past June, Dan and Patty celebrated their 59th anniversary. Over the years of being a father and a teacher, he was perhaps best known throughout the community as Coach Doom. Coach Doom started as an assistant football coach for the Wickenburg Wranglers in 1968 where he would coach for more than 25 years. He started the track team in the mid '70s, and by 1976 he had coached a team that won the state championship. Dan would coach track until 1990. He loved all sports and shortly after starting the track team, he began the Junior Olympics Program for his own kids and other local youngsters. The Junior Olympics kids would go on to some illustrious years through the late '70s thru mid '80s, culminating with the 1986 high school track team that featured many of those original kids, now juniors and seniors. Taking a cue from track and field, Dan started the cross-country team in the mid 80's. If that wasn't enough, he found time to coach the girls' basketball programs at Wickenburg High School in the mid '80s as well. Dan was an avid golfer, a passion he picked up earlier in life from his father-in-law, Harry Cooke. In the mid '90s he would bring his golf passion to the WHS program, taking over the coaching duties from Bob Friece. He coached golf for the rest of his life. Like track before, Coach Doom started and ran junior golfer programs always with an eye to the future. He turned out several top-ranked individual golfers and many teams that would be highly competitive at the state level. The past two years, Coach Doom returned to his football roots where he again served as a defensive coordinator for the Wranglers' football team.
"Coach Doom's experience and dedication to Wickenburg athletics are unmatched," Athletic Director Matt Johnson said. "Coach Doom is truly a man who dedicated his life to Wickenburg High School and its athletic department. Dan's positive attitude, infectious smile, and his dedication to put Wickenburg students and athletes above all else. "As a coach, Dan Doom is irreplaceable. As a man, Dan Doom is unforgettable. He will be missed at Wickenburg High School, but never forgotten."
If all these athletic programs were not enough, he also started many academic programs for students over the years of his tenure at the high school. One of these was a program, where he would take students to the Chicago Board of Trade as part of his business curriculum... and maybe to try a catch a White Sox game, since he was already there. Another of Dan's efforts was the work experience program where students were given the opportunity to work for local businesses and also receive a high school credit. Dan was always a major role model for many students throughout the four generations of children he would teach and coach over his 50+ years with Wickenburg High School.
Besides teaching and coaching, Dan was well known for being a member of the Wickenburg Historical Society, where he was instrumental in the restoration of Henry Wickenburg's house and several town beautification projects. He would be seen in many Gold Rush Days and Christmas Parades driving an old Model A or some other historical vehicle, often with a grandkid riding shotgun. Dan loved his family, his town, his students, athletes and friends, and it showed.
Dan was preceded in death by his parents; a brother Samuel; and a sister Lottie. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Patty Doom; his two sons, Sam and Andy (Leonor); his daughter, Danelle; seven beloved grandchildren; and brothers Dennis, Donnie and Robert.
Dan was a remarkable man of character and a person of everlasting impact on his community. Above all, Dan believed in the community and the children of the next generations. Dan, Dad, Coach, thank you for being an integral part of our lives and the teachings you gave all of us on how to be good people in our own lives and make a positive impact in the lives of others. There are no words to say how much we will miss you and how much we love you. You will live on forever in our memories.
Due to Covid restrictions on gatherings, the family held a small ceremony attended by family and several longtime friends. In addition, they wish to express their gratitude for the kind words from those who attended the drive-through tribute. The family cannot be more thankful for the well wishes from the many, many people who sent their condolences via Facebook, email, cards and in-person. Once restrictions are lifted, the family would like to hold a celebration of life open to the public to remember a man who has meant so much to his family and the Wickenburg community at large. Rest in Peace Dan.