ST. PAUL — Oda Mary Dawson, 89, of St. Paul, a former longtime Erie resident, died at 12:15 p.m. 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 married William “Bill” Melborn Dawson on Jan. 21, 1942, in Erie. The couple had lived in Erie since marriage until moving to Prairie Mission Retirement Village apartments 2 1/2 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, and the VFW Auxiliary in Erie. In earlier years had served as president of the Parent-Teacher Association.
Survivors include her husband, William “Bill” Dawson of the home in St. Paul; four daughters, Mary Jane Whelan of rural St. Paul, Billie Jones and her husband, Don, of Olathe, Wanda Cooper and her husband, Dale, of Deer Park, Texas, and Shirley Green and her husband, Jery, of 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, Joan Volk, both of rural Erie, Olvie Elmer of Walnut and Beatrice Humphrey of 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; a granddaughter, Michelle Harmon; and a son-in-law, Jack Whelan.
A graveside service will be at 10 a.m. today at Lakeview Cemetery near Erie.
The family requests no flowers and suggests memorials to Faith’s Hope Fund. These may be left at or mailed to Forbes-Hoffman Funeral Home, P.O. Box 374, Parsons, 67357.
Online condolences may be left at www.forbeshoffman.com.