Dorothy F. (Lanford) WilsonDorothy (Dottie) Wilson, born Sept. 25, 1930, died Jan. 22, 2012.
Dorothy (Dottie) Wilson, born Sept. 25, 1930, died Jan. 22, 2012. She announced to her children standing at her hospital bedside that she would be leaving the earth the following day. True to her word, she passed the next morning with her little dog Polly lying next to her, while holding the hands of her daughters, who were sitting by her side.
She was born in Athens, Ala. to Roy Malone and Bertha Jacobs. She spent a good portion of her life in Iron River raising her family, then in later years in Waukegan, Ill. with her husband Jim Wilson and her beloved dogs Pokey, Parker and Polly.
She worked most of her lifetime picking cotton in the fields of Alabama as a child, doing factory work, waitressing and working as a nurse's aide, but mostly as a mother who loved her children more than life itself. She had a love of animals and a heart of gold.
She was preceded in death by her parents; infant son Jerry Payne; sisters Virginia Mann and Joyce Ann Dugger; brother Roy H. Malone Jr.; husbands Nelson Payne, Leon Lanford and Jim Wilson; and her "babies" Pokey and Parker.
She is survived by daughters Sandy (James) Morris, Poplar, Kathy (Jeff) Kemp, Brule, Diane Lanford Martin, Superior, Rhonda Lanford (Judith Davidoff), Madison, Wis; a son Raybron Lanford, Duluth; stepchild Steve (Kathy) Wilson of Waukegan, Ill., and her children of the heart, Ellen Berz of Madison, Wis., Elizabeth Smith of Ocala, Fla., and Ken Meysman of Poplar. She is also survived by her brother Johnny Malone of Elkmont, Ala., sister Linda Malone Garrett of Athens, Ala.; grandchildren Jay, Jimmy, Jesse, Jason, Amanda, Garrett, J.W and J.R.; great-grandchildren Kevin and C.J.; many nieces and nephews; and of course, her beloved dog, Polly.
Her legacy and love will live on through her family who loves her very much. We extend a special thank you to Hospice of St. Mary's Medical Center, Duluth, who cared for her in her last hours with respect, love and grace, and who gave the family support and genuine love during this very hard time.
A memorial service will be held at the Cremation Society of Duluth, Friday, Jan. 27 with visitation 2:30 until the 3:30 p.m. service and reception to follow.
Dottie used to tell her children that if she were a rich woman, she would take in all of the animals who were hungry, abused or had no place to call home and make sure they were cared for. To honor her wish, in lieu of flowers, our family asks that memorials be made to the Animal Allies of Superior.