January 9, 1958 – July 18, 2016
Our own Doug Dugan left us to play in the Big Leagues, with our Lord in heaven, on Monday, July 18th, at age 58. Doug was originally born in Canada to full-blooded Irish parents, Margaret and David Dugan, as their first-born son. As a baby, he moved with his family to the United States and they settled in Virginia. As a young boy, Doug quickly excelled in many things, but especially the game of soccer. His father David, a veteran player who played for the British Embassy, introduced him to his soon-to-be passion. Doug even adopted his father’s jersey number, number 10. Unlike any other number in soccer, the number 10 carries the most prestige, as it has been worn by famous players like Pele (Brazil) and Lionel Messi (Argentina).
Throughout his youth, Doug played the position of midfield with local soccer club teams in Virginia and then moved up to the United States All Star Soccer Team. In 1976 he and his team, Annandale Boys Club Cavalier, won the McGuire Cup, the highest youth soccer championship awarded to United States youth players. In 1978, he graduated from Lake Braddock High School and attended Washington D.C.’s American University on a full soccer scholarship. Doug won Most Valuable Player in 1978-1979 and 1979-1980 on AU’s team, the Eagles. In 1979, his team won the East Coast NCAA Conference Championship
His passion for soccer shifted when he spotted a pretty and outgoing coed, Deborah Sedillo, on the quad. As soon as he saw her from his dorm window, he knew “she was the One” and even though he was incredibly shy, he managed to gather the confidence to invite her to his soccer game. They began dating as students at AU. Prior to graduation, he was drafted to play for Pittsburgh Spirit, a professional indoor soccer team, but chose to finish his collegiate career. In 1981, Doug and Deborah both graduated from American University.
After college, Doug played for the Washington Diplomats, a renowned national professional soccer team. He also coached soccer for St. Anselm’s Abbey School, an all-boys preparatory school in Washington D.C. In addition, he worked as a club team referee and later played on a number of amateur leagues. Doug and Deborah were married in 1985 by Archbishop Robert F. Sanchez, uniting the Irish and Spanish to create the Sedillo Dugan family.
Doug rose to stardom in his professional career as well. He worked for Bell Atlantic as a sales rep, garnering multiple top salesman awards. In 1986, while he excelled in his job and had been an athlete his entire life, he was diagnosed with Systematic Lupus Erythematosus. Regardless of the challenges of his chronic condition, he worked for the next 15 years as a leading salesman for Hilti Construction, while also raising his two beautiful daughters, Christina and Lauren, with Deborah. As his lupus progressed, he found working full time and managing his chronic illness too challenging and left his professional life.
As he chose to do anything, Doug then threw himself into being the best stay-at-home father and husband, any wife/daughter could ever ask for. He coached his daughters’ club soccer teams in Phoenix and never missed a game. His daughters both graduated from Xavier College Prep in Phoenix. During this same time, Deborah advanced in her television and communications professional career, moving the family to Albuquerque briefly and then Phoenix in 1999, where they stayed and grew roots.
Doug tried to live healthily with his lupus despite many challenges and complications which tested his family and their love. Even so, with the love and support of family and friends, Doug, Debbie and their girls always came out the other side, stronger than ever. In fact, ever the quick wit, Doug oftentimes spoke about lupus, mimicking hypochondriac George Costanza (Seinfeld) who whenever he got sick, immediately thought “Is it lupus? Is it lupus?!” As a former athlete, Doug fought for his health and would not let the limitations his lupus imposed, interfere with his need to be physically active and to be the best husband and father he could be. When he couldn’t play contact sports anymore, he took up golfing and he and Deborah enjoyed playing together all around Arizona.
Doug died mountain biking in Phoenix, doing something he loved, with the “wind at his back and the sun shining on his face,” a nearby soccer field within his sights.
Our Doug/Daddy is remembered for his stubbornness, keen wit, and positive spirit.
He is survived by his parents, David and Margaret Dugan (Belfast, Northern Ireland); his sister Allison Millar (Dennis); his brother David (Kathy); his devoted wife of 30 years, Deborah Sedillo Dugan; and daughters Christina and Lauren. Christina, a broadcast journalism graduate of Arizona State University, works as a reporter for People magazine. Lauren works full time and attends school for nutrition and health. Survivors also include his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Pablo and Dorothy Sedillo (Santa Fe, NM).
Son, Husband, Father, Brother, Teammate, Irishman, Son-in-law, Mentor, Brother-in-law, Friend, Uncle, Coach, Neighbor, Champion: “That man” Doug Dugan lived his life as a true #10, just like the number on his soccer jersey.
A memorial mass will be held on Tuesday July 26th at 10:30 am at St. Gabriel the Archangel Catholic Church, 32648 N. Cave Creek Road, Cave Creek, AZ 85331.
In lieu of flowers, the Dugan family will be establishing a Doug Dugan Memorial Soccer Scholarship Fund at his alma mater American University. Please stay posted for more information about donating to help worthy high school soccer players with their tuition so that they can follow in Doug’s footsteps, playing for American University’s Eagles.
As Doug believed, “Football (soccer) is a matter of life or death, except more important.” ~ William “Bill” Shankley, Scottish soccer player, Liverpool England soccer coachPrint Obituary & Condolences