Long-Time Gainesville resident receives gift from community members

Elizabeth F. Dieter | Apr 10, 2017

Long-time Gainesville resident Lilton Lawson has been taking Prime Timer classes at North Central Texas College (NCTC) since the program’s inception in 2013. Lawson has taken almost every computer class offered by the Prime Timer Program, most taught by instructor Doug Lillard.

Lawson has a fascination with computers and the way they work. Lillard noted that Lawson is more like a teaching assistant than a student.

“Lilton is a lot more than a student when he’s in class,” said Lillard. “He has an expertise that most of the people in the Prime Timers classes just don’t have. We learn from each other in this program and students who have taken classes with Lilton before quickly learned the benefit of sitting next to him in class.”

Though Lawson has been taking these classes for many years, he does not have a computer of his own at home. Lawson has taken advantage of the computer lab in the newly dedicated Dr. Eddie C. Hadlock Center for Student Success and uses the public computers at the Cooke County Library. 

Having seen his dedication in class and his willingness to help others, Lillard rounded up some community members to help get Lawson a computer.

Mike Rigler and Associates donated a Central Processing Unit (CPU). Bill Williams and Associates donated a Video Display Terminal (VDT), also known as the monitor. Brian Montgomery at Computer Doctors donated the Random-Access Memory (RAM), and the NCTC Prime Timer faculty donated the mouse and keyboard.

With all the parts, Lillard was able to put together a slightly used, but more than adequate computer for Lawson to use at home.

“I think this whole experience really exemplifies what it’s like to live in a community like Gainesville,” said Lillard, “what it’s like to have a community college like NCTC, and what it means to offer programs like Prime Timers.”

The Prime Timer Program offers classes on the NCTC Gainesville campus. These classes are offered free of charge to any Cooke County resident over the age of 62. The program offers classes in language, computers, recreation, and much more.

Lillard presented the computer to Lawson on at the beginning of their Beginning Computers II class. “I really appreciate everyone that has been a part of this and that helped build this computer,” said Lawson.

NCTC Prime Timer Instructor Doug Lillard (right) presented long-time Gainesville resident Lilton Lawson (left) with a computer in the Beginning Computers II class.