Memorial planned March 25 for Dorothy Neal, 1924-2022

Family and friends will gather March 25th for a Funeral Mass in memory of Dorothy Neal. Here’s the remembrance they’re sharing now:

Dorothy Neal joined her husband Jim and son Jimmy in heaven on February 25th, leaving behind a legacy of love.

She was born on June 9, 1924, to Louis Joseph and Hannah Murdoch Blanchard in Seattle. She was raised in South Park, the 9th of 10 children. A fondness of dancing the Jitterbug and Swing attracted her to the “best dancer in Ballard,” Jim Neal, and the two married in 1944. The family moved to Vashon in May 1951 and spent many happy years grilling salmon, singing around the fire, reading stories, and dancing. She worked as a librarian for the Vashon Island School District and she received her BA from CWU in 1984. Along with skiing, jogging, and boating, Dorothy was a gifted artist, seamstress, and puppeteer; and crafted over 250 marionettes for her traveling show, “The Theater of the Little People.” The show went on tour in Washington and BC.

The passing of her son Jimmy and suffering from breast cancer were two tribulations that had a huge effect on Dorothy but attested to her tenacity, faith, and spirit. She spent her later years working for daughter Shelley at her preschool and was known for her loving presence, hand-painted cookies, and the way she made each child feel special and loved. She was called Grandma Dorothy by all.

She lives on through her family, students, and friends whom she affected greatly with her positivity and living life to its fullest. Dorothy leaves behind her sister Irene Dufort, her five children Kathy Winge (Carl), Joe Neal, Diane Kukull (Walter), Teresa Walsh (John), Shelley Neal (Ralph), 18 grandchildren, 22 great-grandchildren, 6 great-great-grandchildren. There will be a Rosary said Thursday, March 24th at 7 pm at the Island Funeral Service and a Funeral Mass celebrated by Rev. David Mayovsky at St. John Vianney, Friday, March 25th at 11 am. A luncheon will follow. Burial will be at Calvary Cemetery in Seattle Saturday morning. Remembrances in Dorothy’s name can be sent to Providence Mt. St. Vincent Foundation, where she was lovingly cared for the last years of her life, 4831 35th Ave SW, Seattle 98126.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries and memorial announcements by request, free of charge. Please email the text, and a photo if available, to

7 Replies to "Memorial planned March 25 for Dorothy Neal, 1924-2022"

  • Gloria T March 15, 2022 (10:23 am)

    Beautiful tribute to a beautiful lady.  Hugs to you, Shelley.

  • wscommuter March 15, 2022 (11:44 am)

    God bless Dorothy and rest in peace.  Those of us who were fortunate enough to know you were all the better for it.  

  • Sharon March 15, 2022 (3:26 pm)

    Rest in peace Dorothy. She was my mom’s neighbor at The Mount. Beautiful woman. She loved watching basketball. Dorothy will be missed.

  • Doug Weaver March 16, 2022 (8:44 am)

    Sending lots of love to the Neal family. She was a gracious lady. 

  • TC March 20, 2022 (7:33 pm)

    God bless grandma Dorothy…..and I’m sure I speak for anyone who knew her; thank you! 

  • Ann March 24, 2022 (8:17 pm)

    She was a gift to us all! What a full and beautiful life she lived and we’re all better for having known her. She made the cutest and tasiest sugar cookies in the PNW –  thank you Grandma Dorothy.

  • Kate March 24, 2022 (10:33 pm)

    Dorothy is much missed here at the Mount. Her contagious demeanor and sweet spirit are what I loved most about Dorothy. I mean, she was the cutest thing ever! And Shelley I will miss seeing you too! Love to all, xo.

Sorry, comment time is over.