“The Dorns are the sort of people that bring soup to ailing friends, help out the elderly with small repairs, and give rides to their Amish neighbors as a matter of course,” the committee said in its announcement.
During the three month renovation of the Springfield Library last year, the Dorns volunteered so much time moving books and bookcases that Town Librarian Echo Weller joked about bringing in cots for them.
According to Beverly Guilfoyle , Clerk of Session at the First Presbyterian Church of Springfield: “If they hear of something at church that needs to be done, the next thing you know, it’s magically done (Dorn done).”
Born and raised in Springfield, Jeanette Dorn is a direct descendant of the Way family who were early settlers of Springfield, arriving around 1770.
After graduating from Springfield Central School, where she had been active in sports, Girl Scouts, band, and choir, Jeanette earned a degree in Nursery Education from SUNY Cobleskill.
Jeanette worked as teacher’s aide at Springfield Elementary, and then returned to college at SUNY Oneonta for her elementary teaching certification.
Dennis Dorn grew up living on Canadarago Lake in Richfield Springs. After graduating from Richfield Springs High School in 1966, and working for the Shurkatch Fishing Tackle Company for a short time, he began his apprenticeship with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers in Utica.
In 1968 Dennis was drafted into the Army, and after basic training at Fort Dix in New Jersey and then generator school at Fort Belvoir in Virginia, was shipped to Vietnam where he served until February of 1970.
Returning from Vietnam, Dennis resumed his electrical studies, and with money received from the Army, bought a 1970 Triumph motorcycle.
Dennis’ best friend Billy Allen was running the Springfield gas station at the time (then owned by Gordon Ostrander, now Tom and Kelly Mabie’s, on the corner of US-20 and NY-80), and had employed a young lady by the name of Jeanette Burst to pump gas there while Allen drove school bus, and that was where the Dorns first met.