Whetten selected D-Day dedicatee

Longtime Douglas Dispatch editor Bruce Whetten has been selected this year’s Douglas High School homecoming dedicatee.

Longtime Douglas Dispatch editor Bruce Whetten has been selected this year’s Douglas High School homecoming dedicatee.

He was nominated for this honor by the coaches at Douglas High School. Whetten will be recognized in the homecoming parade up G Avenue Thursday evening, and again at halftime of the Bulldogs game with Pueblo Friday night.

With this dedication, Bruce now joins a list of distinguished past D-Day dedicatees which includes former coaches, administrators and community members some of those being: Dick Keith, Abe Grijalva, Tim Brown, Ron Ellsworth, David Bond, Paula Shelton, Manny Valenzuela, Dale Kleck, Mike Foster, Don Riley, as well as the late Howard Henderson, Ken Cormier, Paul Denham and, Tony Cortez Rose.

Whetten came to Douglas in January 1986 with the intent of staying a couple of years, getting some journalism experience before moving on. He quickly fell in love with the community and decided to make Douglas his home.

“I came here a Blue Devil wearing blue and white,” he said. “When the time comes for me to leave, I will depart an adopted Bulldog wearing black and gold.”

He describes what he does in his job as a love of the game and the enjoyment he gets of watching the young men and women he covers grow, mature and succeed. When Bruce became managing editor of the Dispatch eight years ago, one thing he refused to give up was his sports coverage.

Five months after first arriving in Douglas, Bruce covered his first state championship when the Lady Bulldogs track team brought home the state title. Since then, through his pictures and stories that have appeared in the Douglas Dispatch, Bruce has reported on Douglas High School’s graduations, and countless other school related events. He has helped the community celebrate state and regional championships in all sports, has shared stories of some of our Douglas High School athletes who have gone on to bigger and better things. Some of those athletes are now coaches at DHS while others are parents in the community, whose sons and daughters are now participating in DHS athletics.

He states he loves nothing more than to be able to brag about “his” athletes whenever possible. That was the case this past May when he helped five of our Douglas High School athletes receive Cochise County Prep Athlete of the Year honors through a contest sponsored by his parent company, Wick Communications.

In addition to maintaining a steady job with the Douglas Dispatch, Whetten has found time to serve on a variety of local committees. Twice he was president of the Douglas Little League. He owned a successful photography business for 19 years where he was a proud supporter and photographer of the Bulldogs, capturing many of their moments on film while sharing their stories in the Dispatch. He spent two years doing some color commentary to the late Howard Henderson of KDAP Radio, broadcasting the Bulldog games. During that period, Bruce also hosted a Coaches Corner radio show every Saturday morning where he would interview various coaches and athletes who had standout performances the week before.

Over the years, Whetten has also won numerous awards for his work. One of the more notable awards was the Ray McNally Award where he was recognized for his “outstanding contributions in the promotion of high school athletics.”

Whetten says being named the 2019 Douglas High School homecoming dedicatee is very humbling and tops all pf the other accolades he has received over the years.

“I’ve always admired the past dedicatees for what they have done to help the athletic program at DHS,” he said. “To now be amongst that group, is truly an honor.”

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