BALDWIN - Dorothy "Dotty" Smeester, 80, of Baldwin, formerly of Green Bay, Wis., died Sunday, Feb. 3, 2013, at her residence.
Dotty was born Jan. 5, 1933, in Wausaukee, Wis., the daughter of John and Mary Tadish. She attended elementary school in Wausaukee prior to graduating from high school in Amberg, Wis. While in high school, she would meet the love of her life, Loren Smeester.
Loren enlisted in the armed forces where he proudly served in the United States Navy. During this time, Dotty worked both in Chicago and Puget Sound, Wash., as a civilian secretary for the Navy and Air Force. The two would be united in marriage on April 22, 1953, in Bremerton, Wash. This union would be further blessed with children Loren Jr., John, and Scott.
Dotty worked for Prange Department Store for several years as a secretary while they lived in Green Bay. In 1972, the Smeesters moved to River Falls. They would make Baldwin their home in 1992, when they started raising bison and Dotty began working in the financial aid department for the University of Wisconsin - River Falls. She later helped with the Silver Bison Ranch and Shop.
Dotty was a devout Catholic who was extremely grounded in her faith. She cherished her time at Immaculate Conception as a Sacristan, Eucharistic Minister, and member of the Parish Council of Catholic Women (PCCW) Guild. Dotty also enjoyed time spent bicycling with friends, playing cards and bridge, or working on crossword puzzles. She made many friends within her book club and was always game for a trip to the greenhouse as she loved her flower gardens. Her greatest passion was being the matriarch of her family. Her family was her life. Cooking and baking for them were rewards and not tasks. She was ever so proud of the family she and Loren raised.
Dotty will remain in the hearts of her husband of 60 years, Loren Sr.; sons, Loren Jr. (Marilyn) of Baldwin and Scott (Julie) of White Bear Lake, Minn.; grandchildren, Sarah and Noah Smeester; and brother-in-law, Ed McWilliams.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her beloved son, John; siblings, Ed (Buella), Fran (Ed) Wojcik, Bernice (Russell) Leaveck, Evelyn (Odis) McLellan, and Irene McWilliams.
The Mass of Christian Burial was held Thursday at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Hammond, Wis.
Memorials are preferred to Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and will be used for Masses said in her memory.
The Oconell Funeral Homes, www.oconnellfuneralhomes.com, is in charge of arrangements.