Family and friends are remembering Mike Mullins, the long-time director of the Hindman Settlement School, who died last night.
Officials say he had an apparent heart attack while exercising at the Knott County Sportsplex.
Friends say he dedicated his life to eastern Kentucky and his service to eastern Kentucky will never be forgotten. He was even giving back to the community just one day before he died. Friends say he was refereeing basketball games at his church on Saturday.
Mike Mullins touched many lives in Knott County and Eastern Kentucky.
"Mike always did a lot to help other people. He didn't want any honors for himself," said Dr. Grady Stumbo.
"I know of no person who cared more for eastern Kentucky and the children of eastern Kentucky than Mike Mullins in some many different ways," said former Governor and University of Pikeville President Paul Patton.
Mullins helped many children in his 34 years heading the Hindman Settlement School.
"When most of those institutions were no longer able to survive, he converted it to a use that has continued to be a service to the region. Not many people could have done that," said Patton.
Mullins talked to WYMT in 2004 about his mission at the school.
"The mission and purpose of the Hindman Settlement School is to provide educational service opportunities for the people of this area and keep them mindful of their heritage," Mullins said in September of 2004.
Friends say he did just that, combining the arts and writing through the center and helping many children through the dyslexia center.
"He's going to be missed. He was a wonderful man and did a lot for the county," said Stumbo.
He also did a lot for the whole region. He was involved with the East Kentucky Leadership Conference from the beginning.
"This is a good time for all of us to stop and reflect just how much this man did for eastern Kentucky," said Stumbo.
Mullins was 63 years old.
Visitation will be Wednesday 6:00-9:00 p.m. at Hindman Funeral Services Chapel. The funeral will be Thursday at 1:00 p.m. at the Hindman Funeral Services Chapel.
The family asks in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Hindman Settlement School New Office Fund, PO Box 844, Hindman, KY 41822.