MONTOURSVILLE -- For the first time in nearly four decades, a familiar name in Lycoming County will not be on the ballot on Election Day. After nine terms and more than 35 years as mayor, Montoursville Mayor John Dorin is retiring.
It's hard to find someone who loves Montoursville more than Mayor John Dorin. He must really love it. Dorin spent four years on borough council and 36 more as mayor.
"Close to four decades. It's like I belong here, that I can't leave," Dorin said.
But he is leaving. At the end of the year, Dorin is retiring.
"Bittersweet. I am going to miss the people. I love Montoursville," Dorin said.
John Dorin got involved with local government in 1977 when his boss at Sylvania Corporation told managers they should do community service. Dorin became Mayor of Montoursville in 1981. He tried to retire in 2013 but changed his mind, and then won as a write-in candidate.
"You can't leave. We need you and we need your support," Dorin said.
Dorin says a high point of his tenure is improving the look of Broad Street.
"That was going to put something downtown that we didn't have before," Dorin said.
Then, there was what Dorin calls the lowest point in his career in 1996.
"That's constantly on my mind, Flight 800," Dorin said.
Dorin was the face of Montoursville as the world watched them grieve the loss of 21 people from the school community in a plane crash.
"We started laying out the plan. There was no book to tell us this is what you do in a disaster, a catastrophe. And that's what we had," Dorin said.
Many people in Montoursville say they'll miss Dorin and it will be strange having a new mayor.
"He's a true gentleman. He really is, and he gave it his all," Faye Konkle said.
"He's a good neighbor and was a good mayor," Don Konkle said.
There will be two names on the ballot for Montoursville Mayor. Dorin tells Newswatch 16 he has a bit of advice for whoever wins.
"Be yourself. Do the best that you can. That's all I would ask," Dorin said.
Mayor John Dorin plans to spend time with his family after he retires.