Dorothy Marie Ash Slack of Lakeland, Florida passed away on June 26, 2020, at the age of 94. Daughter of the late Thomas Marvin Ash and Anna Irene McCall Ash, Dorothy was born in Louisville, KY, on July 31, 1925. Loving wife of the late James Warren Slack, Jr., mother of the late Claudia Ann Slack Hilbert (Steve), James Warren Slack, III (the late Barbara Dove) of Lexington, MA, Dorothy Joan Slack Eddins (Tony) of Jacksonville, FL, Alice Marie Slack Collins (David) of Lakeland, FL, and Robert Glenn Slack (Kathleen) of Pasadena, MD.
Dorothy was predeceased by her husband of 71 years, Warren, in 2019, daughter, Claudia Ann, in 1979, sister, Betty Joan Ash, in 1952 and brother, Thomas Marvin Ash, Jr., in 2008. She is survived by two sisters-in-law, Marjorie Ash of Louisville, KY, wife of her late brother, Thomas Marvin (Buddy) Ash, and Helen Emerson Slack of Palo Alto, CA, wife of Warren Slack’s late brother, Keith Volmer Slack.
After graduating from Louisville Girls High School in 1943, Dorothy attended the University of Louisville, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Home Economics with an emphasis on clothing design. While Warren was stationed at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station, he and Dorothy were re-introduced through a mutual friend and were married April 3, 1948, spending their honeymoon at Clifty Falls, Indiana.
While in college, Dorothy worked for Selman’s Department Store in Louisville, but after graduation and just prior to marriage she worked for a local physician. Dorothy and Warren’s five children were born within six-and-a-half years of each other, so much of her time was spent raising and caring for her family. She was an amazing cook, seamstress and juggler – raising five children. When Warren took a new job in Baltimore, the family moved to Severna Park, MD, in 1962. In 1995, Dorothy and Warren moved from Severna Park to The Florida Presbyterian Homes in Lakeland.
When her oldest daughter was a senior in high school, Dorothy started teaching Kindergarten at Solley Elementary School in Glen Burnie, Maryland. She loved teaching and taught at that school for over 20 years before retiring.
Dorothy made friends easily. She once spoke on the phone for nearly 20 minutes with a stranger who had dialed the wrong number. She had many life-long friends from Louisville and Severna Park with whom she stayed in contact and visited frequently. She enjoyed playing bridge, antiquing, and sewing – especially quilting, which showcased her artistic skills of color, pattern, and design. She became an avid sailor after Warren bought a cruising sailboat with a galley where she could fix something to eat and a bunk where she could take a nap. Dorothy and Warren also loved traveling, visiting many places in the United States as well as Canada, Russia, England, Scotland, Ireland, Greece, Italy, and Australia. For 30 years, they vacationed each summer with college friends on the coast of Maine.
Dorothy is survived by four of her five children; five grandchildren, Robert William Slack of Cambridge, MA, Erin Collins Rittling (Phil) of Pittsburgh, PA, Heather Slack Mielke (Gary) of Westminster, MD, Lothian Buss of Durango, CO, and Jonathan Collins (Abby) of Orlando, FL; and five great-grandchildren, Samuel and Susannah Collins and Brooke, Mackenzie and Harper Mielke.
A private family service will be held later this year to celebrate her life. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the Loving Care Fund at Florida Presbyterian Homes, 6 Lake Hunter Drive, Lakeland, FL 33803.
Condolences may be sent to the family at Heath Funeral Chapel.
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