John Dolega was a long time supporter of the Dearborn Symphony. He served for many years on the Dearborn Symphony Board (DOS), and the Dearborn Symphony Endowment Fund (DOSEF). He was chair of the Dearborn Symphony Artistic Committee, and continued to be an advisor to the officers of the DOS and DOSEF long after his retirement from official positions with the Symphony.
John Henry Dolega
September 1, 1920 – June 26, 2021
John Dolega, of Dearborn, passed away on June 26, 2021 at the age of 100. Beloved husband of Eleanor for 67 years. Loving father of Sharon Dolega (Don Tujaka) and Jean Dolega (Don Lauter). He also leaves behind many dear family members and friends. Services will be private. Donations in John’s name can be made to the Capuchin Soup Kitchen.
The following was printed in the Dearborn Times-Herald in honor of John’s 100th birthday.
By ZEINAB NAJM
DEARBORN — U.S. Navy and World War II veteran John Dolega celebrated his 100th birthday outside his Dearborn home on Audette Street surrounded by friends, family and community leaders.
During his birthday drive-by celebration, Dolega was greeted by members of the Police and Fire departments, the Dearborn Legion Riders of Post 364, Dearborn Allied War Veterans and salutations from elected officials representing Dearborn.
Dolega’s wife of 66 years, Elenor, also was by his side as he was honored. The couple have two children together, Sharon and Jean.
When told about his Sept. 1 birthday celebration, Dolega jokingly responded by saying, “What’s the big deal?” A resident of Dearborn for 66 years, he is known in the city because of his community involvement and former law practice.
Dolega left school to join the U.S. Navy and fight in World War II. He then went to Detroit College of Law, graduating with his law degree, and practiced law in Dearborn with an office on Monroe. The State Bar of Michigan honored him with a certificate for 50 years of practicing law.
Some of Dolega’s activities include serving as a legal advisor for the Dearborn Exchange Club for 47 years and as artistic director of the Dearborn Symphony Orchestra.
In 1981, Dolega was honored with the Member of the Year Award by the Exchange Club. In 1989 he served as club president.
His time with the symphony was spent serving on the artistic committee which put together the musical programs for each year. Additionally, he advised the symphony board on issues that needed attention and continued providing legal advice after he retired from the board.
Dolega also enjoys traveling the world, loves sailing and University of Michigan football, owned five race horses with his law partners, owned a Christmas tree farm near Brighton, and is an active member of Christ Episcopal Church.
He is known as a committed family man and active in the community.
Stan Nycek, a friend of Dolega who knows him from the Exchange Club and Dearborn Symphony, said the work Dolega did puts him as a pillar of outstanding service to the city of Dearborn.
“John is a truly outstanding individual who gave his service to the Exchange Club of Dearborn for many years,” Nycek said. “On a personal level, as long as I have been a member of the Exchange Club, I have developed a close rapport with John Dolega. His keen mind and many interests made it a pleasure to talk with him at our Exchange Club’s luncheons and events.”