May 28, 2020

Dorothy Tummolo Dotson, age 92, of Wise, moved on to her eternal home on May 25, 2020.

Known as “Mamaw” to her many great- and grandchildren, and “Dot” to everyone else, Dorothy lived for the past four years at Mountain View Regional Hospital Long-term Care in Norton. There she delighted in the care of her nurses, whom she respected and cherished, as well as making daily rounds to socialize with and help take care of her neighbors. Dorothy, after all, had made this her life’s purpose for nearly a century: serving others.
Whether in working as a phlebotomist at Wise Appalachian Regional Hospital, or in her decades of volunteer work, Dorothy chose to give freely of herself to any and all whom might have needed help (or perhaps just a home-cooked meal). She and her late husband, Bill, served for years with Wise Little League. She worked with the Girls’ Auxiliary program at Wise Baptist Church. She was a homeroom mother at Wise Elementary School. She actively coordinated the Wise Teen Club throughout the 1960s and 70s, and even until to the mid-2000s, teenagers in Wise (and more than a few door-to-door missionaries) knew Dorothy’s kitchen as a place where icy lemonade and biscuits and gravy were always available.

Every Christmas, hundreds of families throughout Southwest Virginia decorate their trees with ornaments Dorothy made by hand. She crocheted miles of scarves and quilts for friends and family, as well as her nurses and their families too. She continued this hobby to her final days, in fact. In 2018, Dorothy taught crocheting skills to two of her neighbors in the Long-term Care Unit, and within months, they’d donated 150 “preemie hats” to babies born prematurely at hospitals throughout the region. This persistent selflessness, and the size of Dorothy’s heart, were perhaps her most lasting characteristics, even though she herself would describe them only as a simple product of her Baptist faith.

Dorothy was preceded in death by her husband, Bill Dotson Sr., her parents, Giuseppe and Elizabeth Tummolo, her sister, Violet, and brother, George.

Surviving Dorothy are a great number of family members and friends she considered as family, chief among whom include son Bill Dotson Jr. and wife Melinda from Wise, son David Dotson and wife Henrietta from Wise, and sister Mary Jo Prince and husband Lester of Wise.

She is remembered dearly by her grandchildren, Chad Dotson and wife Sabrina from Wise, Cory Dotson and wife Ashley from Wise, Jordan and Nathan Dotson from Charlottesville, Kristen Hincher and husband Jonathan from Johnson City, David Adam Dotson and wife Jennifer from Charlottesville, and Mark Dotson and wife Raina from Wise.

Dorothy also held a tremendous amount of love for her twelve great-grandchildren, as well as her dear nephew Ken Dotson and wife Judy, niece Linda Burgess, niece Jill Prince, nephew Robin Dotson, two great nephews who called her Grandma, Aaron and Eric Dotson, the son of a lifelong best friend whom she considered family, Robbie Stallard, as well as many other nieces, nephews, and extended family and friends.

Funeral services for Dorothy Dotson will be conducted at 1 p.m. on Friday, May 29 at Zion Family Ministries in Wise with James Wilson and Bill Dotson Jr. officiating. Burial will follow in Powell Valley Memorial Gardens in Big Stone Gap. Visitation we be held from 11:30 a.m. until time of services at 1 p.m.

We will be following State Mandated Guidelines on Social Distancing and Occupancy of the Church for Services.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorial contributions be donated to Dorothy’s favorite charitable organization, Samaritan’s Purse, at P.O. Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607 or online at: Please visit to leave online condolences for the family.

Sturgill Funeral Home, Wise, is in charge of arrangements.