One of the most remarkable things I’ve learned in my 30 years of practice is that, while every person I’ve met is unique, we are also very similar. We all share a desire to be cared for with compassion, to have our needs listened to, and to live the healthiest life possible. It is my goal, and the goal of everyone at Van Horn Family Dentistry, to fulfill those desires every single day.
I was born and raised in the greater Kittanning area of Pennsylvania. In 1966, I was drafted and joined the Navy. The Navy offered a choice of schools at which to be trained, and I got my seventh and last choice on my list: dental technician. Little did I know this would set into motion an entire career path.
My remaining time in the Navy was spent at the Naval Dental Station in Guam from 1969 to 1970. After being discharged in 1970, I got a job for the Seventh-day Adventist Church’s General Conference in the Far Eastern Division. From 1970 to 1973, I built and established the first and only dental laboratory in Guam. I also began pursuing my undergraduate work at the University of Guam.
In 1973, I moved to Collegedale, Tennessee to finish my Bachelor of Science in biology with a minor in chemistry at Southern Adventist University, then known as Southern Missionary College. I attended dental school at the Medical College of Georgia.
After graduating from undergraduate school in 1975, I relocated to Augusta and taught at the Medical College of Georgia: Augusta Area Tech’s co-op program, which offered an associate’s degree in dental laboratory technology. There, I taught ceramics, dental materials, and several other classes in crown and bridge.
In 1977 I started my studies at the Medical College of Georgia School of Dental Medicine and graduated in 1981, when I moved to Calhoun. One year later, I decided to open my own practice, Dorsey L. Van Horn’s Family Dentistry. Now, more than 30 years later, I continue to update my education through involvement in the Seattle Study Club, Georgia Dental Association, and the American Dental Association.
I met my wife, Mary Ellen, while she was working as a dental assistant at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. We were married in 1968 and have been blessed with two daughters, Elizabeth and Michelle. Our two grandchildren, William and Tessa, light up our lives. Family is absolutely central to my life and friends are a close second.
My personal hobbies fill an eclectic list, including muscle car restoration, welding, woodworking, photography, travel, and mountain biking.