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GMC Remembers the Life of Dr. John H. Ferguson

GMC Remembers the Life and Legacy of Dr. John H. Ferguson

Georgia Military College is deeply saddened by the passing of GMC Alumnus, Dr. John H. Ferguson. GMC has been a part of Dr. Ferguson’s life for many decades. In 1943, his parents moved to Milledgeville and John’s father, Major Luther Ferguson, became the school’s dean, then a science teacher. Dr. Ferguson was a graduate of both GMC high school (Class of 1961) and the junior college (1963). 

“For all of us we lost an icon in our community – a man that loved others, treated every one with respect and dignity, and always had something positive to say,” shared LTG William B. Caldwell, IV, President of GMC. “He was also an incredible supporter of the GMC mission and especially of our students. His involvement and daily participation in doing everything possible to ensure GMC was able to support every student was commendable. We will dearly miss him, a true gentleman, a man of character, a community supporter and a servant leader. The GMC family is better for having known Dr. John Ferguson.”  

After his graduation from GMC’s Junior College, Dr. Ferguson entered the Emory University School of Dentistry from which he graduated in 1968, then entering the U.S. Army Dental Corp., where he served at US locations and in Vietnam and received both the Bronze Star and the Vietnam Civic Action Award. After two years with the Army, Dr. Ferguson was again accepted at Emory as a resident in orthodontics.  When this residency was completed in 1972, he returned to his hometown of Milledgeville with his wife, Janet, to begin practice.   During his dental career, Dr. Ferguson has been appointed to and involved with many different associations and committees, serving as president/chairman of several. In these roles, he has dealt with passage of legislation updating the legal procedures dental auxiliaries could perform; decisions on handling CDC, OSHA and other government regulations; organizing a dental insurance services company; and providing continuing education and fellowship in the areas of dental practice management.

In October 2006, he was inducted as a Fellow of the International College of Dentists, an honorary organization for the recognition of outstanding and meritorious service to the profession and community. This honor was closely followed by his receiving the John E.MacNamara DDS Meritorious Service Award from Emory University. This award honors a distinguished alumnus who gives of his time and expertise to the university or the profession of dentistry.   In addition to his business involvement in the community, Dr. Ferguson was also active with memberships in a number of civic organizations, the Central State Hospital Local Redevelopment Authority, the Milledgeville/Baldwin County Chamber of Commerce, and worked within his church as well. He served as President of the GMC Alumni Association and at the time of his passing, was serving as an advisor to the GMC Board of Trustees as well as 1st Vice Chairperson of the GMC Foundation.

“As an alum of the Prep School and the Junior College, John’s connection with GMC spanned a lifetime. Ever a true friend and stalwart supporter of GMC and the Foundation, John remained active until his passing,” said Dudley Rowe, Chairman of the GMC Foundation. “Over the years, his steady, quiet leadership as Vice Chairman of the Foundation Board, along with his work on the Development Committee, helped the GMC’s endowment grow dramatically in support of the mission and vision of his beloved alma mater.” 

The Ferguson family has strong ties to GMC. In addition to Dr. Ferguson’s father being a GMC faculty member for 25 years, his brother and Janet’s brother also graduated from GMC. Dr. Ferguson and Janet’s daughter, Emily, graduated from the Prep School in 1984, earned a BS in chemistry from Emory University, and a Pharm.D. from Mercer University School for Pharmacy. 

Over the years, Dr. and Mrs. Ferguson have contributed in many ways to GMC, not only in service, but financially as well. Their commitment to GMC is greatly appreciated by prep school and college students alike who benefit from the Ferguson Health Services Center in Usery Hall, the Ferguson Multi-Use Basketball Court in the Kidd Center, and the upcoming Ferguson Upper Lobby in the new Prep School Annex. Because of his gracious time and service to GMC, Chairman of the GMC Board of Trustees, Randy New, says Dr. Ferguson’s legacy will never be forgotten.

“Dr. Ferguson loved GMC with all his heart,” New said. “You’d see him at every event, every fundraiser, and every fine arts performance. He was a true southern gentleman and one of our biggest supporters. He will be truly missed, but we will never forget what he’s done for GMC.”

Dr. Ferguson’s service visitation will be at Moore’s Funeral Home on Friday, July 12, 2019 from 4:00-6:00 p.m. His funeral will be held at First Baptist Church on Saturday, July 13, 2019 at 2:00 p.m., followed by the burial at Westview Cemetery on Ernest Byner Street.