The family of Dorothy (Williams) Watson is very sad to announce her passing on September 2, 2019.
Dorothy was a lovely woman and a source of unconditional love for her children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and her family in Michigan; a source of support and affection for her many students and friends; and a source of joy for all those who were lucky enough to know her in her role as consummate musician.
Dorothy was joyous and kindhearted. She had an infectious smile and shared it often. She was an accomplished musician and delighted all with her piano and organ recitals.
Dorothy’s life story began in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on Christmas Eve, 1927. She had a happy, secure childhood with her parents and her older brother Bob. At the tender age of 4 she started playing piano, and at age 13 she began to study and play the organ. This proved to be the beginning of her life’s passion. She graduated from Grand Rapids Christian High School in 1946 and subsequently attended Calvin College and Indiana University, graduating with a Master of Music Education degree.
Dorothy was adventurous, and it was during one of her many travel adventures that she met, then soon after married, Chief Officer Evan “Taffy” Williams, who worked for the Canadian Pacific Steamship Co. It was because of her adventurous spirit that Dorothy was able to seamlessly relocate from her home in Michigan to Vancouver, BC, where Taffy was based. In May of 1959 they welcomed their son Evan to the world, and in August of 1961 their daughter Mamie joined the family. They were married for 28 years until Taffy passed away in July 1986.
Starting in 1968, Dorothy was Organist and Choir Director at West Point Grey Presbyterian Church in Vancouver. Between 1968 and 1979 she taught at Quilchena Elementary School in Vancouver and will be remembered affectionately by her students as “Mrs. Williams, our music teacher”. Starting in 1979, Dorothy served as Head Teacher and Vice Principal in the Vancouver School System, and from 1984 to 1986 she served as Music Consultant for the Vancouver School Board, encompassing 90 schools.
From 1986 to 1990, Dorothy was Vice Principal of Champlain Heights Elementary Annex in Vancouver, BC. She retired in June of 1990.
In 1991 she met and married the second great love of her life, Ernie Watson. They were married for 11 years until his death in September 2002.
Dorothy’s superlative skill as an organist resulted in her being invited to play the famous organs in the Mormon Tabernacle in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove, California. She performed for the San Diego Theatre Organ Society, and frequently for the Mount Baker Theatre Organ Society, with her longtime performing partner Hal Logan. Dorothy would play the “Mighty Wurlitzer”, and Hal would play the Steinway grand piano. Dorothy was also a longtime member of Vancouver’s venerable North Shore Organ Music Club.
During the period 2009 through 2018 Dorothy was the beloved organist at First Church of Christ, Scientist, in West Vancouver.
Dorothy’s life story ended on September 2, 2019 in Ridge Meadows Hospital.
Missing Dorothy each and every day are her son Evan, daughter-in-law Lin and grandchildren Dylan (Noela) and Diondra (Geoff); her daughter Mamie and son-in-law Don Savenkoff; granddaughters Jessica and Shelby (Nick Dennett); great grandchildren Michael, Brooklynn, Peyton and Austin; and her extended family in Michigan – nephews Don (Sandy), Dale (Linda) and niece Jayne.
Her family and her many friends feel blessed to have had the sunshine that was Dorothy Watson in their lives. She was vibrant and gregarious and could light up a room from the moment she entered it.
She made the world a happier place.
A service commemorating Dorothy’s life will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, September 16, 2019 at West Vancouver Presbyterian Church, 2893 Marine Drive, West Vancouver, BC.
In lieu of flowers, donations to The Canadian Cancer Agency would be appreciated.
You are invited to leave a personal message of condolence.
Nos plus sincères sympathies à la famille et aux amis de Dorothy Ann Williams Watson..
Décès pour la Ville: Aldergrove, Province: Colombie britanique