Beloved sister, aunt, friend and trailblazer Dorothy Julia “Dottie” Gandolfo passed away at home in her sleep on Sunday, Jan. 27 in Oakhurst. She was 80 years old.
Born in Boston, Massachusetts on June 25, 1938, Dottie was the daughter of Emily Duffin Healey, a homemaker, and John Patrick Healey, who drove a truck for the local gas company.
Dottie was preceded in death by her parents, and brother John Patrick Healey II. She is survived by best friend and sister Patricia E. Lutz, and leaves behind niece and nephews Debra Kneisler (John), Eric Lutz, Alex Lutz (Karen) and a large family of multiple generations.
At the age of 15, with her parents, brother, and sister, Dottie flew from Boston to California on a prop plane, and spent much of her life in the southern part of the golden state. As an adult, she relished traveling to exciting destinations, whether it be the streets of Italy or the seas of an Alaskan cruise. She loved romance novels and being outdoors in nature. Camping was a favorite pastime, at the beach and in the mountains, provided there was a motor home involved.
Always at the forefront of women in business, Dottie worked in the supermarkets and grocery stores industry, first in retail and then in sales and marketing. Well dressed, smart, and accessorized with a great sense of humor, Dottie was outspoken and irrepressible — and people cherished her for that.
A clever gambler, Dottie excelled at the slots, playing four or five dollars high in Las Vegas when the rest of her entourage played nickels. Lucky, she usually walked away a winner — and Dottie always shared.
Dottie was very active in her church. Her love and charity will be remembered: she was always present for family and friends.
Seven years ago, Dottie made her way to Oakhurst, where she lived with her treasured sister Pat, making good on their lifelong promise to remain close to one another. As she had no children, Dottie thought of her nephews and nieces as her own, and loved them dearly, as they loved her.
Living here in the foothills, said Dottie, was like being on vacation every day.
Dottie will be deeply missed. A celebration of her life will be held at Our Lady of the Sierra Catholic Church, on Friday, Feb. 15 at 11 a.m.