June 20, 1930 – July 30, 2016
Mrs. Lawson, as she was known to generations of
William Monroe High School (WMHS) students, passed
away peacefully at home surrounded by family on
Saturday evening, July 30, 2016. She has now
completed her mortal journey and goes to join her
husband of 62 years, Thomas; her son, Darrel D.
Lawson; her parents Asbury and Ida (Breeden) Deane;
her in-laws, Sydney (Sink) and Meta (Roudabush)
Lawson; dear Aunt Nora (Roudabush) Wampler; and yes,
some of her former pupils.
Dorothy was born June 20, 1930, and raised in
rural Greene County. She was the oldest of three
children and later was oft-described by her children
as a depression [era] child, as was her husband. Her
response belittled the hardships of the era, and she
could be heard to say that “it wasn’t so bad out in
the country - you grew what you ate.” Never mind all
the hard work that entailed; never mind all the hard
work that all of her achievements entailed. Dorothy
was a pig-tailed schoolgirl, then valedictorian of
her WMHS Class (’47), then graduated Madison College
(now JMU) with a Bachelor’s degree in Business
Education, married the love of her life, Thomas, and
began her family and her long teaching career at
WMHS from 1952-1988. And when her youngest child was
of school age, she added a Master’s Degree in
Education from Madison. Her children commented
recently of Yearbook meetings or activities that
occurred at the home as Mrs. Lawson was Sponsor of
the WMHS Annual, The Trail, for many years.
She was also a long-time member and pianist for Mt
Vernon Methodist Church, made many trips and
baseball games where she kept score and was the head
cheerleader while her husband coached; and all the
absolutely wonderful parenting received – story
after story. She, and her husband, Thomas, took
square dancing lessons and joined the Greene
Cloverleafs in retirement, dancing with the group
for years. They also farmed and took some
much-needed vacations across this country.
Dorothy’s family is truly blessed and those left
to cherish her memory are her brother and
sister-in-law Harold and Lois Deane of Earlysville,
and her sister Joan D. Watson of Ruckersville and
their families; her children and spouses Kyle and
Linda Lawson, Carolyn Lawson, and Lori Lawson
Tawney, all of Stanardsville and Marilyn and
Clifford Peacock of Churchland, VA. With the oldest
grandchild’s arrival, Edward Lawson, Dorothy
permanently became “Granny” and the persona she
carried for the rest of her days. Edward and his
wife Victoria reside in Ruckersville. Other
grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and a
great-great-grand child followed: Sheila M. Peacock,
Meghan (Eric) Davis, Sean M. Peacock, Brittany N.
Tawney, Gennie (Chris) Morris, Blaine T. Tawney;
Jessica, Jaimi and Makenzie Lawson, Charlee and Zane
Davis, Lyndsey and Lily Tawney; and Shelby Lawson.
Chase, the best little dog according to Granny, is
also left to miss her.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, August
6, at 11 a.m. at Ryan Funeral Home in Quinque. There
will not be a viewing; those wishing to visit with
the family can one hour prior to services. Interment
will be private.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers,
donations be made to the Greene County Rescue Squad,
PO Box 302 Stanardsville, VA 22973 and/ or Hospice
of the Piedmont, 675 Peter Jefferson Pkwy Suite 300,
Charlottesville, VA 22911.
An online guestbook is available at