Oda Mary Dawson, 89, St. Paul, and former longtime Erie resident, died Saturday, June 26, 2010, at Prairie Mission Retirement Village in St. Paul.
She was born Dec. 6, 1920, in Harrison, Ark., to Lewis M. and Nancy Elizabeth Jones Newberry. As a young girl, she grew up and attended school in Harrison, and at the age of 19, moved to Erie. She and William “Bill” Melborn Dawson were married Jan. 21, 1942, in Erie. The couple had lived in Erie since marriage until moving to Prairie Mission Retirement Village apartments 2¬Ω years ago.
Her family was her life. She especially enjoyed spending time with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. For many years she worked at Pierce-Carson Wall Funeral Home in Erie, served on the Neosho County Republican Party Committee, and volunteered for the Red Cross Bloodmobile where she also served as director.
She was a member of the First Christian Church in Erie, the Erie American Legion Auxiliary where she served as chaplain and president, the VFW Auxiliary in Erie, and in earlier years had served as president of the Parent-Teacher Association.
Survivors include her husband, William “Bill” Dawson, of the home, St. Paul; four daughters, Mary Jane Whelan, rural St. Paul, Billie Jones and husband, Don, Olathe, Wanda Cooper and husband, Dale, Deer Park, Texas, Shirley Green and husband, Jery, Erie; 14 grandchildren, Lisa Osment, Jackie Harmon, Bryan Whelan, Teresa Gharst, Stephanie Stan, Sunnie Jones, Betty Bacon, Jeffery Cooper, Desiree Siens, Bryan Janssen, Kimberly Mann, Scott Green, Cheynet McGuire and Doug Green; 33 great-grandchildren; four great-great-grandchildren; four sisters, Elveta Dorris, rural Erie, Joan Volk, rural Erie, Olvie Elmer, Walnut, Beatrice Humphrey, Afula, Israel; a multitude of nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews, and great-great-nieces and nephews
She was preceded in death by three brothers, Emerson Newberry, Arvin Newberry and Eltie Newberry; three sisters, Dorothy Armer, Juanita Davidson and Louise Hines; one granddaughter, Michelle Harmon; and son-in-law, Jack Whelan.
Graveside service will be 10 a.m. today, June 30 at Lakeview Cemetery near Erie. The family received friends Tuesday evening at Prairie Mission Retirement Village Chapel in St. Paul. The family requests no flowers and suggests memorials be made to Faith’s Hope Fund. These may be left at or mailed to Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home, P.O. Box 374, Parsons, KS 67357.