Longtime Wayland supporter, former professor dies

Dr. Dorothy McCoy, who spent 26 years teaching mathematics at Wayland Baptist University and retired as Distinguished Professor Emeritus, died Wednesday morning, Nov. 21. She was in her late 90s.

A graveside service is planned for 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 23, in Plainview Memorial Park. A memorial service will be held Tuesday, Nov. 27 at 3 p.m. in the chapel at First Baptist Church in Plainview.

For those who learned under her, McCoy is remembered as a professor who took her subject and the academic progress of her students seriously. She is also remembered for her dedication and support of the university long after she retired in 1975.

McCoy came to Wayland in 1949 from Belhaven College in Mississippi, then one of few women to hold the doctorate degree. From then on, she poured her love of learning and teaching into her students and dedicated herself to their growth and success.

"Whatever I did, I wanted it to be connected with students," she said in an interview earlier this year.

Wayland honored McCoy on Sept. 27 by dedicating an honors dormitory in her name in a renovated facility at 7th and Borger Streets, just a few blocks from the campus.

"She's one of those people who is the real cornerstone of a place," said Dr. Bill Hardage, vice chancellor at Wayland who was a student here during McCoy's teaching days. "She's done so much for so many, and we just wanted to honor her for all she's done." After retiring, McCoy spent six months in Malawi, Africa, teaching missionary children. After a year back in Plainview, she traveled to Indonesia to work at a school for missionary children for three months. That love of missions eventually bloomed into a mission interest group she started with a local missionary who was home on furlough. The group met in her home before finding its permanent location at First Baptist Church. She continued to coordinates publicity and speakers for the event until her death.

McCoy received the Distinguished Lifetime Service Award in 1999 from the Association of Former Students. She also had a bust created by former WBU art teacher Bob Dunaway presented to her at a Board of Trustees meeting in March 2000. The bust is on display in the Mabee Learning Resources Center, near the Abraham Art Gallery.