JOHNSON, Dodd William, 53, passed away on Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Dodd was born & raised in Austin, Texas.
Throughout his life Dodd participated in sports. Baseball remained his first choice. His love of the game began at NW Little League where his dad, Bull Johnson, was involved as his coach & biggest fan. Dodd was chosen to the NWLL and NW Pony/Colt Leagues All-Star teams almost every season.
At the age of 10, he was asked to participate with a U.S. team travelling to Mexico City. It was there, he hit his first of many over the fence, out of the park Home Runs. Dodd began his high school days at Anderson, then he became a Westlake Chaparral where he was a member of the Baseball Team & Graduated in 1982. McLennan Community College (MCC) in Waco, Texas is where Dodd chose to further his education & play more Baseball. Although in January of 84' he was drafted by Philadelphia Phillies 2nd round, 48th overall in June of 84' he was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 9th round, 108th overall. Dodd chose not to sign either time. He was focused on MCC. He represented the Highlanders well with his bountiful bat. Not only did they participate in the 1984 Junior College World Series, the Highlanders came away with the Championship Title and Dodd was named most valuable player of the series.
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In 1985 The University of Texas Longhorn Baseball Team was his next stop. It was that season that Dodd put his name in the record book. He became the 1st player in UT history to hit 2 successive "Monster Shots" over the centerfield wall of Disch Falk Field in a single season. Dodd contributed on many occasions that year including an unforgettable series hitting 9 for 11 against the Aggies on their home turf. His bat was "On Fire" the Horns punched their ticket to Omaha & the College World Series. The season ended with UT finishing in 2nd. Dodd was very proud to belong to the "T" Association at Texas following in his Dad's footsteps. In June of 1985 he was again drafted by the Atlanta Braves organization in the 1st round, 14th overall.
It was go time. His professional Baseball career had begun. His playing time started in Sumter SC, he played in Durham NC for the Durham Bulls when the Movie debut on the big screen. He was a Peninsula Pilot based in Hampton, VA. Dodd finished out his career with the Braves Organization in Reno, NV with the Silver Sox. His professional career spanned a period of 6 years ending in 1991. Later in 1991 Dodd was offered an opportunity to go to Australia and play for the Sydney Wave in the Australian Baseball League. He added one more season to his resume.
Dodd returned to his home in Austin in 1992 where he focused on coaching, mentoring and cultivating the baseball talent in young players. With the help of some former MLB players he established "Heart of Texas" Baseball Camps. Here, he taught many young men the mechanics of baseball. He coached select teams and offered private 1 on 1 lessons for many youth in and around the Austin area. A highlight in his personal Career was when his on screen film debut was made in the movie "The Rookie" a story about Baseball. In 2005, Dodd joined the Baseball Factory Team where he continued to coach and mentor young players while showcasing their talents to College coaches. Dodd remained at the Factory for 13 years as a Regional Scout until his death. Baseball Factory stated recently that "he went above and beyond for players and parents. He was outstanding, working with players one on one to correct a hitting flaw, both making them better as a player and also instilling confidence that carried an athlete beyond the field into the rest of his life. He made an impression on many and cultivated relationships globally.
Dodd and his wife Deanna moved from Austin to Colorado Springs, Colorado in 2012 where together they opened the doors to Double "D" Ranch dog boarding and training. Dodd and Dee spent their spare time taking in the scenery and hiking around the mountains with their dog family.
Dodd was happy, content and loved by many all around the world including his four legged friends. He touched many lives. He was a presence that all of us were fortunate enough to witness and enjoy. Many since childhood days. What was yet to come from him we can only wonder but as always he would have given it everything he had and leave us to marvel at the man, the coach, the mentor, the funny guy, the friend that we will forever think about and smile. He will always be in our thoughts and memories. Taken from all of us too soon.
Contributions can be made in memory of Dodd Johnson to a scholarship that will be established in his name at the University of Texas & Baseball Factory. Please follow this link if you would like to contribute. https://www.gofundme.com/51tgkfk
If you have any questions please contact Marcy Johnson Fizeseri at firstname.lastname@example.org. As Dodd considered his animals like family and he & Deanna fostered many dogs. Contributions can also be made in Dodd's name to: Gold Ribbon Rescue of Austin on the Website: www.grr-tx.com