Welcome to the memorial page for

Dorothy Mary (Heitger) Sturdevant

September 13, 1920 ~ June 20, 2017 (age 96)
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Dorothy Mary (Heitger) Sturdevant, born in Massillon, OH on September 13, 1920, passed away on June 20, 2017. Dorothy was the middle of nine children born to Leo and Mary Heitger. Leo owned the Heitger Funeral Home on First Street, and there were times Dorothy was called upon to drive an ambulance or perform other duties for the family business. She worked for Republic Steel as a metallurgist during the war; a Rosie the Riveter-type job. She was one of the many proud women who stepped up when her country needed her. After the war she moved to Michigan and worked for Kaiser Frasier, where she met Robert Sturdevant, and they were married in 1947.


Dorothy and Robert had three children, Michael, Susan (Turner) and Mark. The family moved to San Diego, CA in 1960, where Dorothy lived until she passed. Dorothy was a homemaker until 1967 when she went to work at the Salk Institute. She retired as a lab support manager after 19 years. Robert passed later that year (1986), and Dorothy spent her retirement years volunteering, traveling, she worked a part-time job for a while, but mostly spending time with her children, six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.


Dorothy was a creative and artistic woman who enjoyed drawing, oil painting, knitting and crocheting, and would tackle just about any project that needed to be done from painting the house to upholstering furniture. She loved to sew and made most of her own clothes and clothes for her family. She wanted a stained glass window in her kitchen, so she learned how to make one.. She enjoyed gardening and made beautiful handmade greeting cards. She made baskets out of pine needles and was proud to have had one of her baskets purchased as a gift for a man who was knighted by the Queen of England! People were surprised to learn that she used a computer, iPad and communicated via text message up until the end; she wasn’t afraid to learn new things.


Dorothy was 66 when her husband died. In 2000 her son, Michael, passed away. In 2001 she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and even chemo didn’t get her down. She lost her hair, but was never sick a day from the treatments. Life wasn’t easy, but she kept her sense of humor until the end. We are all so grateful for her wonderful attitude!


Dorothy is survived by her daughter, Sue (Ray) and son, Mark (Betsy), six grandchildren, Noah (Kara), Kendra (Emile), Eric (Angie), Danica, Leah and Ryan, two great grandchildren, Chase and Alyssa, and her brother, Bob Heitger of Massillon and sister, Alice Ertle of Canton not to mention countless nieces and nephews! Preceding Dorothy in death were her husband, Robert, son, Michael, brothers, Howard (aka Tut) (Ruth), Jim (Barb) and Don (Joan), and sisters Edna (Jim), Irene (Gene) and Ann (Kenny).


Dorothy will be laid to rest at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery in San Diego, CA on Monday, July 10, 2017, with her husband and next to her son.

 Service Information

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