MIDDLETON, Wis. — Dorothy A. Pontious, 78, passed away on Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2010, surrounded by her family at HospiceCare in Fitchburg, Wis., after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.
“Dotty” was born on Oct. 11, 1931, in Oak Park, Ill., to Edna and John Beach.
She was a gifted clarinetist and musician who attended the prestigious Interlochen Music Camp on full scholarship and went on to win a full ride music scholarship to University of Wichita, where she met Melvin F. Pontious, her husband and companion of 56 years. She taught private clarinet, oboe and sax lessons for years and was proud of her talented students, many of whom played in the high school band that her husband directed. Over the years, her students have commented on her musicianship, her teaching ability and her empathy, and many have maintained close contact.
Melvin Pontious was raised in the Parsons area and attended high school here.
Dotty and Mel raised two daughters, Linda and Karen. Dotty was devoted to her role as wife and mother and enjoyed cooking and baking for loved ones. She delighted in creating a home that reflected warmth, comfort and cheer, and retained an almost childlike delight in the holidays, which her children very much still value. She was an affectionate mother and friend, putting time and attention toward making others feel special.
Survivors include her husband, Melvin; two daughters, Linda Lewis of Agoura Hills, Calif., and Karen (King) Mueller of North Platte, Neb.; two granddaughters, Alyssa and Ashlyn of Agoura Hills, Calif.; a brother, Donald Beach (Phyllis) of Franklin Park, Ill.; a sister, Dolores Baumruk (James) of Glendale, Ariz.; and 10 nephews and nieces.
Dotty was preceded in death by her mother and father.
Services will be in Madison, Wis., and La Salle, Ill.
All Faiths Funeral and Cremation Services, Madison, Wis., is in charge of arrangements.