Dorothy Anna Kaufman

GLADSTONE – Dorothy Anna Kaufman, 96 and a half, of 1306 Michigan Ave, Gladstone, Mich., joined her beloved husband Bill and grandson Billy de la Garza on Jan. 7, 2014.

She was born in Green Bay, Wis., on Aug. 7, 1917, the daughter of Patrick Joseph and Anna ( Masbaum) Ford. She was raised in Gladstone in her mother’s Michigan Avenue house that was built in 1886.

She spent summers in Crandon and Argonne, Wis., on her Uncle John Masbaum’s farm with all her cousins. Her mother owned Champion’s 5 and 10 on 10th Street in Gladstone and she learned all types of handiwork from her mother. Together they quilted, crocheted, sewed, embroidered, and crafted. She attended Gladstone High School, graduating in 1936. In the early 1940s she went to El Cajon, Calif., to stay with her sister Stella and on Aug. 23, 1941, she married the love of her life, William “Bill” Kaufman of Escanaba , in Yuma, Ariz., and honeymooned in Guadalajara, Mexico. When Bill passed away in 2004, they had just celebrated 63 years of marriage. They settled in San Diego where Bill worked in an aircraft factory. Her sons Wayne and Michael were born in 1942 and in 1944. In 1949 they returned to Delta County to Bill’s job at the Escanaba Dairy, living briefly in Escanaba and then moved to her mother’s house in Gladstone to care for her mother who passed away in 1953. Three more children, Laurie, Ford, and Jay were added to the family. In 1987 when Laurie returned to Gladstone from Texas with 5 year old twin sons Billy and Luis, Dorothy and Bill took on the caring for them while Laurie worked. Dorothy’s proudest accomplishment was her family.

Dorothy continued her handiwork and was known as an accomplished seamstress. She loved making beautiful dresses for brides, bridesmaids, and proms. Her pet peeve was store-bought clothing in which the plaid wasn’t matched at the seams. The gifts she gave were always handmade and special. Dorothy also used her handiwork to craft with residents at Christian Park Village where she was a volunteer for almost 20 years. She began by just visiting the residents and later began doing all sorts of crafting with them such as recycling greeting cards into wreaths, placemats, and new greeting cards. Bill would join her on the visits taking their Shitszu-Pekinese, Elvis, to visit the residents. On school holidays Dorothy and Bill would also take grandsons Billy and Luis and they learned the joys of volunteering.

Dorothy was an active member of the Memorial United Methodist Church in Gladstone. She served on the church council and with Bill’s assistance coordinated the funeral lunches for 17 years. She also served on the prayer chain and the Sunshine Committee, sending handcrafted recycled cards to those on the birthday and prayer lists. In 1985 the United Methodist Women of that congregation nominated her as the Shalom Woman of the Year.

Dorothy also loved cooking and baking and was well-known for her muffins. With her baked goods she welcomed new neighbors and new babies. Neighbors who were under-the-weather would receive her homemade soups along with the muffins. At Thanksgiving dinner there was always special guests who otherwise would be alone that day.

Dorothy remained active and alert throughout her 96 and a half years. Although her hands became somewhat arthritic and she couldn’t do the detailed crafting anymore, she still managed to create and send out 35 Christmas card this year. She also enjoyed watching the cooking channel and always interested in trying new foods.

Dorothy is survived by sons, Wayne (Sharon) Kaufman of Glendale, W.V., Michael (Jackie) Kaufman of Mio, Mich., Ford (Alice Yankoviak) Kaufman of Alanson, Mich., and Jay (Patti) Kaufman of Gladstone, Mich.; daughter, Laurie Kaufman de la Garza of Gladstone, Mich.; grandchildren, Mandy Kaufman of Glendale W.V.; James Kaufman of Westland, Mich.; Lindsay (Josh) Major of Mio, Mich.; Luis (Misty) de la Garza, Connie (Tom) Nault, Jaylene Kaufman, Cooper Kaufman, all of Gladstone, Mich.; Ryan (Jenny) Peterson of Bark River, Mich.; great-grandchildren, Deserae Kaufman, Tiffany Kaufman, Jessica and Jera Nicholson, Madison and Tanner Major, all of Mio, Mich.; Abbygail de la Garza; Kyhl, Bella, and Luke Nault, of Gladstone; Tyler Meshigaud, Emma and Ashlyn Peterson of Bark River, Mich.; brother-in-law, Robert Kaufman; many nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews and special friends Peg Wiltzius, Alice Barnhart, Nancy Cambell and Keli Gustafson.

She was pre-deceased by husband Bill, grandson Billy de la Garza, parents, sister Estella (Clarence) Walz, brother Charles (Irene) Champion, in-laws Ethel (Tom) Mannebach, Mina (Joe) LaCrosse, Kathlyn (Jim) O’Dess, Irma Kaufman, Helen (HM) Cottle.

The family will receive friends on Saturday, Jan. 18, from 10 to 11 a.m. at the Memorial United Methodist Church in Gladstone. Memorial services will be at 11 a.m. at the church with Pastor Elizabeth Hill officiating. A luncheon will be served in the fellowship following services.

Dorothy will be laid to rest next to Bill in Fernwood Cemetery.

The Kaufman family is being assisted by the Skradski Funeral Home in Gladstone.

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