Dennis Dunkins, who served on the board of Trinity Metro and was a strong supporter of mass transit and passenger rail, passed away recently after being hospitalized for Covid-19. Dunkins, a Fort Worth native, was 80.
Dunkins was deeply involved with the Fort Worth school district and worked to give Black students and educators opportunities to advance into leadership positions. He was a founder of the Texas Alliance of Black School Educators.
"Dennis had a passion for passenger rail and transit and was keenly interested in promoting and expanding rail service at Trinity Metro and throughout the region," according to Texas Rail Advocates President Peter LeCody. "When we wanted to bring advocates together for gatherings in Fort Worth Dennis made us feel at home and opened up the meeting rooms at Fort Worth Central Station. He regularly attended our Southwestern Rail Conference and we traded emails and phone calls about how the region could benefit from transit and rail. The transportation community has lost a great voice."
Dunkins was a frequent bus and rail rider and would bring first hand experience to Trinity Metro board meetings, citing where improvements should be considered. He would regularly organize trips for his family on Amtrak's Texas Eagle, leaving out of the Fort Worth station he was proud to show off.
Dunkins is survived by his wife Eva Marie and son Dennis II., daughters Denise Marie Dunkins and Shanequa Dunkins; brother Douglas Ray Dunkins; and grandchildren Camille, Dennis III and Nathaniel.