Dorothy Elizabeth Rhodes Champion, daughter of the late Dee I. Rhodes and Sarah Catherine Rhodes passed away May 28, 2017, in Collegedale, TN.
She was born July 2, 1939 in Dayton, VA. She attended the public schools of Rockingham County before she attended Shenandoah Valley Academy her senior year of high school.
She started her college education at Columbia Union College in Maryland but took a break in her schooling to be the mother to her four wonderful children Rhonda, Lynette, William (Billy) and DeAnn. She then returned to school to finish her degree in medical technology. After her children finished their education, Dorothy went back to school and earned her master's in public administration from James Madison University.
Music was always important to Dorothy and she started playing piano by ear at a very early age. She continued her love of music taking both piano and organ lessons and becoming the church organist at just about every church she attended. She was a very integral part of the New Market church’s pipe organ build and maintenance. She loved her church and playing the organ there. She spent many late Friday evenings and early Sabbath mornings preparing to play for the week’s church service. After she retired, she began teaching piano lessons at Shenandoah Valley Adventist Elementary. She loved teaching her students to love music and to play with their heart. She especially loved having the privilege to teach some of her grandchildren to play piano.
Her beautiful life will forever be cherished by her children: Rhonda (Jonathan) Malloch of Apison, Lynette (Darryl) Armstrong of McDowell, Va., Bill (Cindy) Champion of New Market, Va., DeAnn (Raymond) Bell of Ooltewah; 12 grandchildren, Jessica and Sarah Malloch, Joshua, Nicole, Billie, and Paul Armstrong, Christina and Mandy Champion, Payton, Jessie, Jack and Will Bell; siblings Delores (Larry) Mountz of Ooltewah, Betty (George) Grames of Redlands, Ca., Brenda (Jim) Fluharty of Dayton, Va., Blake Rhodes of Dayton, Va., and a host of devoted nieces, nephews, cousins and friends. She was preceded in death by her parents, Dee and Catherine Rhodes.
Family will receive friends in Chattanooga at Heritage Funeral Home on East Brainerd Road on Tuesday, May 30, from 6-9 p.m. Dorothy will then be taken home to Virginia where family will receive friends on Thursday, June 1, from 7-8 p.m. at McMullen Funeral Home in Harrisonburg, Va. Funeral services will be held at the New Market Seventh-day Adventist church at 10 a.m. on Friday morning. A graveside service will follow.
Visit www.heritagechattanooga.com to share condolences with the family.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the music program at Shenandoah Valley Adventist Elementary 507 Bindery Rd, New Market, VA 22844.
Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home, East Brainerd Road.