By Anayeli Ruiz
He was an important part of Howard College's history. On Monday, a man who was instrumental in starting the technical trade program at Howard College was honored.
Former Howard College Trustee Don McKinney pushed the school to offer more technical trade classes. In the end, his hard work paid off.
On Monday, the Occupation Trades Building was named after him.
"He knew if you had those skills, no one can take them away from you, this community needed those things," McKinney's son, Larry McKinney, said.
Larry knows first hand how hard it was for his father, but he always managed to survive thanks to his technical skills.
"He was a farmer, things went bad and he became an electrician. No matter how difficult things get, if you get skills, you can take care of your family as needed," Larry said.
At the time, McKinney was on the Howard College Board of Trustees. He knew a technical program would serve the students well.
"He was Chairman, he started something, help put it together and today it was finally completed," McKinney said.
And he would be proud at what has started as a small technical program has grown over the years. Don McKinney's legacy will forever be remembered.
"Howard County depends on workers that come from the technical area," Howard College President, Cheryl Sparks, said.
65 students have participated in the program so far and they hope that this number grows. Howard College plans to offer dual credit classes for High School students in the Fall.