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Dorothy (Hap) Clay

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Dorothy (Hap) Clay Obituary

The eternally happy Dorothy (Hap) Clay was born at home in Browns Valley, CA to Estelle and Charles Buhl on July 9, 1919. She died at her home in Fernley, NV on June 20, 2015. She was a graduate of Marysville Union High School and Heald's Business College in Sacramento, CA. She was very proud of her perfect attendance record, for which she received a box of pencils for having never missed a day of school throughout all her years of education!

In 1940, she and her childhood sweetheart Frank W. (Bud) Clay ran off to Virginia City to get married. Afraid to tell their parents, they each returned to their family homes and kept their marriage a secret until they felt the time was right to spring it on them. As children, Hap recounted how Bud's sister would pin him down and tell Hap "I got him; now you kiss him!"

Bud's job with Pacific Bell & Telephone took them from Marysville to South Lake Tahoe. During those years, Hap raised three children, Doris, Doreen and John. Retirement found them in Idaho on the Salmon River, living the rustic life they both cherished, surrounded by animals of all walks of life, which they both loved. Eventually, they moved to Fernley, NV to be near their children. Bud and Hap were married for 68 wonderful years until Bud passed away in 2008.

Hap had many skills and used them to the best of her ability. She was a banker for forty years, retiring as Vice President/Loan Officer at Tahoe National Bank in South Lake Tahoe. While she possessed many office skills, she excelled at shorthand, and her handwriting was unparalleled in graceful beauty! While in South Lake Tahoe, she was instrumental in establishing a chapter of Soroptimist International. She was also a life member of The Order of the Eastern Star.

Known lovingly as "The General" by family members, she was strong willed and strong minded! In truth, Hap was a loving, devoted wife, mother and grandmother and enjoyed taking care of those she loved. She made gorgeous quilts for all her kids; crocheted, and cooked delicious meals for her brood ... all the while, making it look easy!

Her greatest strength though, may have been her incredible social skills. Hap possessed the gift of making people feel comfortable, and never knew a stranger in her life. Even in the waning years of her life, she would hug, kiss and invite you back for a visit… anytime!

She is survived by her daughters Doris Lucchesi (and "just like family" Annie Pinkerton), and Doreen (Bart) Ayres; grandsons John (Lisa) Turner and Brian (Lynne) Turner; great- grandson Ryan (Haley) Turner; great-great- granddaughter Taylor Turner; sister-in-law Nancy Buhl, and many nieces and nephews, all of whom she loved.

She was predeceased by her husband; parents; step-father Perry Baldwin; son John Clay; sisters Evelyn Buhl Campbell and Alma Buhl, and brother Bill Buhl.

In later years, angels appeared to help take care of her. Pat Oliveri and Melinda Stewart became like family to us in 2009 and 2012, respectively, and stayed with us until the very end. We could not have kept our mom at home without their loving help, and we'd like them to know we are forever grateful. We'd also like to acknowledge Eden Hospice for their kind help in easing Mom's transition, and we send sincere thanks to Smith Family Funeral Home in Fallon, NV.

Graveside burial will take place on July 10, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. at the Peoria Cemetery in Browns Valley, CA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Nevada Humane Society, or your local shelter.

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Published in Appeal Democrat on June 28, 2015
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