Christian 22

George William Dougherty, Sr.

March 28, 1944 ~ October 12, 2020 (age 76)


Dr. George William Dougherty, Sr., 76, of Athens, died on Monday, October 12, 2020.

George W. Dougherty, Sr. was a dedicated husband, father and grandfather. He is survived by his beloved wife of 52 years, Mary Susan Sigur Dougherty and his three children: Bridget Dougherty Ratajczak (Robert Ratajczak, Jr.), George W. Dougherty, Jr. (Alicia Bradley Dougherty), and Brian F. Dougherty (Patricia Katsura). He was blessed by his six beautiful grandchildren who brought him immense joy: Elizabeth Ratajczak, Emma Dougherty, Robert Ratajczak, III, William Dougherty, Aiko Dougherty and Victoria Ratajczak. George is also survived by his siblings: sisters Mary Kay Dougherty Roy and Patricia Dougherty Chatelain and his brother Fr. Edward J. Dougherty. George and Susan are well known for “adopting” friends into their family, and he had many special people in his life who called him brother, surrogate father, and “Uncle George.”

George was born in New Orleans in 1944 to the late Mary Koehler Dougherty and Edward J. Dougherty. Along with his parents, George was preceded in death by his sister, Marilynn Dougherty Lacour. 

George was a life-long educator. He served as principal at Terrytown Elementary School in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana and as principal of the middle and elementary schools in Oglethorpe County, Georgia. He was awarded degrees from St. Benedict Seminary in Covington, LA, The University of New Orleans and a doctorate from The University of Georgia. He was loved, respected and admired by teachers and students alike, and fondly known as “Dr. D.” 

George was involved in a multitude of service projects in the Athens community. While battling cancer himself, he and Susan were instrumental in the development of the Cancer Foundation of Northeast Georgia and George served as president of the board. He served as president of the Athens Area Habitat for Humanity and most recently as president of the Georgia Retired Educators Association of Oglethorpe County.

George and Susan have been active members of the Catholic Center at UGA for 33 years. A virtual Funeral Mass will be held on Friday, October 23, 2020 at 2:00 pm on the UGA Catholic Center website at Please join us in prayer online. The family will hold an in-person memorial service for all family and friends at a later date.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Cancer Foundation of Northeast Georgia at

Lord and Stephens Funeral Home, EAST, Athens, GA, is in charge of arrangements.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of George William Dougherty, Sr., please visit our floral store.


Virtual Funeral
October 23, 2020

2:00 PM


The Cancer Foundation of Northeast Georgia
P.O. Box 49309, Athens GA 30604

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