KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – The Hardin Valley community is remembering a life of a beloved educator and colleague.
Ken Dunlap was an assistant principal at Hardin Valley Academy. He died unexpectedly a few days ago.
Dunlap was an educator in Knox County for 34 years working at West, Halls and Karns High School. He worked at HVA for the last three years.
Many of the people we spoke with said he was great at his job but, most importantly, was a great friend to many and made an impact on the community.
“He had a great impact on me and on everyone he worked with at Halls when we worked together. Same for the students. He made the same impact at all the schools he has been at,” Zack Gibson said. “You can see that from the outpouring of condolences on social media. He was a larger than life figure both physically and figuratively. He had a great personality and was always in a great mood.”
The mother of a recent graduate from the school says that Dunlap meant a lot to her son because he believed in him when no one else did.
“He would always check on him. Cooper constantly said that if he looked like he was down for a day. Mr. Dunlap would come and sit with him at the lunch table and just talk to him and see if he’s OK,” Angie Goethert said, “And this summer, Cooper graduated from Hardin Valley Academy. Mr. Dunlap was there. One of the proudest moments of it for Cooper was the fact at how proud Mr. Dunlap was that he had done.”
According to a post from the school, Dunlap also served as a watercolor painting instructor at the Fountain City Art Center and Oak Ridge Arts Center. He has a painting on display as part of a permanent collection at the Trout Museum of Art in Appleton, Wisconsin.
Funeral arrangements for Dunlap have not been announced at this time.
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