July 19, 2018 500 AM
Hersha Rhee Dodson, 79, of Van Horn, passed away July 11, 2018 in Van Horn.
Visitation will be Friday, July 13 at the Heritage Funeral Home in Van Horn. Funeral services will be 10am Saturday, July 14 at the Church of Christ with Jackie Dees officiating. Burial will follow in the Van Horn Cemetery.
Hersha was born in Pecos, Texas to Marjorie Elizabeth Jarrell and Herschel Wilfong Woods on February 18, 1939. She graduated high school in Bentonville, Arkansas where she had moved to the with her beloved grandmother “Mom” Jettie Elizabeth (Furr) Kearney. Her time in Bentonville later contributed to her complete devotion to Walmart in her later years.
After high school, Hersha moved to California to visit with her father and work at Roman’s Chinese Theater and flirted with the idea of being an air traffic controller after taking the entry exam. She ultimately found herself back in the Pecos and Van Horn area working as a waitress in Kent, Texas while saving money for nursing school.
In 1963 she graduated as a Registered Nurse from Shannon School of Nursing in San Angelo. In 1986 She received her Bachelor of Arts in Applied Science at Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls Texas and in 1996 received her master’s in counseling from St. Johns University. She was a Board Certified Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse who used her expertise and compassion to help countless patients in Far West Texas, El Paso and Wichita Falls. She was known to leave no stone unturned to find whatever help her clients needed whether it was wrangling the love of her life George Snyder to make sure the “Donkey Lady’s” donkey had his hooves trimmed to inviting many people down on their luck and at times actively hallucinating to Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner which made for many memorable memories for her family. But perhaps what Hersha will be most remembered for was her laugh and her crack up over everything. Her admonishment to all was to laugh and get your endorphins going no matter how dark the times were or the predicaments people found themselves in. A tireless community services supporter she was a member of the Shelter Board, the Lion’s Club and the Red Hat Society along with untold hours giving to other civil organizations when needed. A lifelong member of the Church of Christ, she endeavored earnestly to love the sinner and provide for the poor and helpless and set the stage for the rest of us to follow.
She received numerous awards and recognitions along the way. However, none compared to finding the love of her life, George Snyder. His passing last year changed her world completely. She is also preceded in death by her father Herschel Woods and her step mom Lois, her mother Marjorie Chandler and her beloved step father Howard Chandler, her beloved Grandparents Jettie and Frank Kearney and her Aunt Rose Kearney and cousin David Kearney and her adored dogs Butch, Precious and Noel along with dozens of stray cats who crossed her path. The father of her children Louis Dean Dodson preceded her in death many years ago as did her fellow “Golden Girl” Jo Jones of Wichita Falls Texas
Hersha is survived by her brother Zane Chandler and Wife Jan, sons Jason and Willie and families; Sister Tana Kay and daughter Cyndi and family; daughter Raina Elise Dodson of Presidio and her son and daughter in law Farley and Cindy Dodson of Pensacola Florida; Granddaughter Calletana Brynne Vargas and great-granddaughter Aria Raina Lujan of Marfa; Grandson Billy Dodson of Pensacola Florida fiancé Chrisleigh and great-grandchildren Violah , Athan, Matthew and Brinnley and grandson George Bradley Dodson of Texarkana. Hersha is further survived by Whitney Lee “Dub” Snyder and daughter-in-law Chelsea Snyder and grandson Cory Scott Schuller of Van Horn Texas and Callie Ellen Snyder and her partner J.W. “Jack” Holt of Austin as well as grandchild Nina Elizabeth Sanchez, fiancé Joshua Jonathan Kuntz and sons Avery Kaleb and Zane Edward of San Marcos Texas. She was also loved deeply by her grandchildren by marriage Anna Arviso Vargas Remillard and her husband Lou Remillard and their three children Arayah, Ryleigh and Nico of Ludlow Massachusetts and Francisca Vargas of San Antonio Texas. She will also be missed by Her uncle Frank Kearney Jr. and children Susan, Lisa and Robert and their families as well as by her sister-in law Marlene Hooper and family, Cousins Sondra and Joyce and their families and friends. Hersha is further survived by her sisters in nursing Beth Gary and Becky Patterson as well as so many more beloved friends that accompanied her on her journey as well as her best friend of 40 years and fellow “Golden Girl” Donna Hendrick of Abilene Texas. She will truly be missed.
A special thank you to Culberson Hospital and their wonderful nurses, medical staff and doctors who made Hersha’s final days peaceful and bearable. Your care for her is a true testament. Memorials may be made in Hersha’s name to Shannon School of Nursing in San Angelo Texas and/or to the National Alliance on Mental Illness or N.A.M.I., 3803 N. Fairfax Drive, Arlington VA 22203 (www.nami.org).
Arrangements are by Heritage Funeral Home of Van Horn.