Dorothy Maxine Donavant, 93, of Grove passed away Thursday, Sept. 21, 2017.
Dot was born on Jan. 14, 1924, in Vinta to Henry and Dora (Han) Whitfield. She was one of 12 children, the third from the oldest. She played basketball for Vinita High School and graduated in 1942.
Soon after that, she married Lon Donavant Jr. and moved to Fort Smith, Arkansas, where he attended Officer Training School.
When Lon left for World War II, Dot was a few months pregnant with their daughter, Lona. When Lona was 3 months old, Dot got a letter that Lon was missing in action. He had been captured but then escaped.
Dot worked at B.F. Goodrich during the war. When Lon came back home, daughter Lona was already 2-years-old.
After Lon graduated from Oklahoma A&M, they moved to Oklahoma City where Dot worked as a meat wrapper at Safeway and attended business school.
They then settled on the island of Aruba for six years, where Lon worked for Standard Oil. While in Aruba, Dot learned how to play Bridge and loved it. She was Lona's Girl Scout leader and co-leader of her granddaughter Kristi’s Troop 181.
Lona said she never had to ask her mother those hard questions because all the other girls in the troop asked them and she just had to listen to her mother's answers.
They then moved to Grove and bought the property that would become the resort Donavant’s Point on Elk River.
After their daughter’s high school graduation, Dorothy and Lon moved to Wichita, Kansas, Altus and then Houston, Texas, where she worked at a beauty shop while Lon worked for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, where he served as an engineer with the team that worked on the Apollo space program. They eventually moved to Grove and retired.
Dot always loved to cook. She would read cookbooks like someone would read a novel. She and her husband traveled all over the country in their RV. They also were excellent Bridge players who loved to entertain and over the years Dot held several positions for the Green County Bridge Association.
Lon and Dot were elected senior king and queen of Grove Senior Citizens and rode in the Pelican Festival with grandkids.
They were known by friends, family and members of the community as Granny Dot and Papa Lon. They were always in the crowd to watch the games of their grandchildren. Dot always tried to help members of her family whenever she could. She was proud of her Cherokee heritage. She was a member of the Deer Clan.
Dot is preceded in death by her husband of 67 years, Lon, and siblings J.D. Whitfield, Henry Whitfield Jr., Mary Alice Bates, Wanda Flood, James Whitfield, Juanita Gaget, Terry Whitfield and Nancy Owens.
Survivors include her daughter Lona Hampton and husband Kelly of Zena; siblings Linda Collins and Bob Whitfield of Vinita, and C.S. Whitfield of Tulsa; many nieces and nephews; grandson David Hampton and wife Kim, Zena; grandson Robert and wife Diane, Zena; granddaughter Kristi Collington and husband, Jason, Zena; six great-grandchildren: Ben Hampton and wife Cassie, Kellea Hampton, Lon Case Hampton, Ashley Hampton, Alicia Hampton and Kellon Collington; and two great-great-grandchildren: Evy and Kager Hampton.
Funeral Services willt take place at 1:30 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 24, at Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home in Grove with Pastor Gary Bishop officiating.
Serving as pallbearers will be David Hampton, Robert Hampton, Ben Hampton, Lon Case Hampton and Jason Collington. Interment follow at the Zena Cemetery.
Services are under the direction of Worley-Luginbuel Funeral Home in Grove. Friends and family may leave online condolences by viewing Dorothy’s obituary at www.honorigmemories.com.