Derek Vincent Dorey

June 5, 1930 - April 2, 2021

Derek “Deke” Vincent Dorey passed on April 2, 2021, at the age of 90. He was preceded in death by parents Horace and Daisy Dorey and his wife of 63 years, Miriam “Mickey” Dorey.

Deke grew up on the East Coast and graduated from Choate Preparatory School and his beloved Dartmouth College. He ran cross-country, was a DJ for the school radio show, sang in the glee club, and pledged Delta Upsilon. It was there that he kindled his life-long affinity for martinis.

He enlisted in 1952 and went to the Army’s Intelligence school. He and Mickey were stationed in post-war Japan on a mission that mostly involved playing volleyball, photographing tourist attractions, and wondering what to do with an Ivy League education.

In 1955, he was hired by General Electric and entered their management program. With each new assignment, Mickey popped out a new kid. In 1965, they settled in Tyler, Texas with four children, where Deke spent 15 years as the Personnel Manager at the GE air conditioning plant. He also received an executive MBA from SMU in 1975.

He was heavily involved in the Tyler community. Deke’s public works included boards and committees for the Texas Mental Health Association, Mother Frances Hospital, Boy Scouts of America, Tyler Jr. College, Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, and the YMCA. When he left in 1980, his going-away party filled Harvey Hall. 

His children learned that his name alone was enough to land a job, sometimes get out of trouble, but never get away with anything because he always knew someone that could tell him what really happened.

GE sent him to Sacramento as a lobbyist for six years before he retired at only 55 years old. After working for 30 years, he spent the next 35 living on a pension. He beat cancer in 1990 and then outran it for his remaining 30 years. Deke finished out his life ruining actuarial tables and life-expectancy estimates.  He earned more in retirement than he did while employed. So yeah, that’s what you do with an Ivy League education.

He loved his family dearly and was a great father, mentor, supporter and owner of the world’s loudest sneeze. His hobbies included golf, sailing, metal detecting, camping, and hiking. While eventually replaced by the internet as the best source for trivia answers, he still retained mastery in making anything “kinda sound true.”

He is survived by children and their spouses of Derek and Barbara Dorey of Kingwood, Doug Dorey and Bob Goldberg of Dallas, David and Karin Dorey of McKinney, and Debbie and Bret Sanders of McKinney. He leaves grandchildren Hans Dorey, Jeremy Dorey, Brian Dorey, Peyton Sanders and Chase Sanders; great-grandchildren of Devin Dorey, Olivia Dorey, and Jacob Dorey.

Like a true Boy Scout, he left the world a better place than he found it. He was a bright, witty, smart, caring, kind, generous man who will be greatly missed.

On his final day, he recounted a camping trip where he and his son David sat atop a mountain overlooking the New Mexico desert. A brilliant, blue afternoon with a hot sun that witnessed a small wisp of white suddenly become a single cloud. It quickly grew large and became dark with flashes of lightning while hanging alone in the sky. It poured out a heavy rain, nourishing a portion of the desert below, and then disappeared in just minutes. It was remarkable, beautiful, and then gone.

And so was he. Among his final words, he summed up both that moment and his entire life.



Memorials Would you like to say a few words? Click Here +

I am so sorry for your loss. I didn't know Deke well, but got to know him better in our 'Chat' group here at the Chateau. He seemed to me to be a person of high integrity, having a positive outlook on life, a good sense of humor and I am missing seeing him.
Arlene R Munden, April 13, 2021 My parents and the Doreys were friends during their younger years when GE was in operation. Mr. Dorey would "tickle" me by being able to whistle out of the side of his mouth. We all enjoyed the positive upbeat attitude that always was a part of his nature. All of you are in our prayers, Rick Goodsell Richard Goodsell Sr., April 10, 2021 Deke, We are sorry to read that you have left us! We remember many happy events where we shared good times during the 20 some years since we met you in McKinney. The Friday night get togethers over drinks and appetizers were always something to look forward to. While I couldn't compete with you on the golf course, I still claim the bragging rights to having the first "Romeio" hole in one about a year before you hit yours. I do remember you inviting me to join you join you to play at the Ranch one very hot day and by the time we hit the 16th hole, all I wanted to do was get the hell out of there and when I got home, the thermometer read "110". Rest in Peace old buddy! Tony Quint Tony Quint, April 8, 2021 I knew Deke from our Wednesday golf outings, (ROMEOS). He was such a pleasure to be around. He always had some witty comment about the subject at hand. He will be missed. Our prayers are with you and your family. Good Bless. Robert Lackey, April 7, 2021 A true gentleman in every sense of the word. I was honored to have known him. Heaven has another great golfer. Stan Garrett, April 7, 2021 Sorry for your loss of your live one. May the blessings of God comfort you. From a fellow "chat group" member Sheri, April 6, 2021 Deke a wonderful man. So sad! He will be missed in the Community
Ruth Ann &Jerry Courtade, April 4, 2021 So glad I had the privilege of knowing Deke! He was a treasure to Chateau residents! He was kind and always ready to help anyone that had a need! Diana Williams, April 4, 2021 Deke was our friend and a vital part of our community. We will miss him ver much. Love you, Deke. Larry and Linda Chaloupka, April 4, 2021