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Doreen Tunnell

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Family-Placed Death Notice

TUNNELL, Doreen Doreen Tunnell died March 27 after a short illness. Born in Butte, Montana, July 1, 1928, she was the daughter of John and Eleanora Ryan, later Mrs. Raymond Brown. She was raised by her mother and stepfather throughout the West including Alaska, California, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. Following high school graduation in San Francisco, California, Doreen moved to Atlanta and began working for the General Life Insurance Company of America where she met Trenton Tunnell, Jr. whom she married in June, 1953. Doreen embraced her new home with enthusiasm and became a devoted Southerner. She volunteered for the Atlanta Speech School, the High Museum and the Lovett School. Among her favorite activities were the annual visits from New York's Metropolitan Opera, summer vacations at Sea Island, and daily walks in the neighborhood with friends. Doreen was committed to a personal spirituality that was a vital component of her life; a spirituality often reflected in her painting. Art was always a passion and Doreen began the study of painting with faculty of the Atlanta College of Art including Ben Shute in the 1950s and 60s. This study continued with Ann Strand in the 1970s and 80s. In the 1990s Doreen enrolled in the Atlanta College of Art and graduated with BFA in 1993. Doreen and artist Donna Pickens taught art from their studio in the King Plow Arts Center. Doreen had a number of one woman shows including a well received retrospective of her work. She is survived by her husband Trenton Tunnell, Jr, and by their three sons, Trenton Tunnell III, Spencer Tunnell, II, all of Atlanta, and Steven Ryan Tunnell, of Palm Springs, California. She is preceded in death by her parents and by daughter-in-law, Lisa Martin Tunnell (Mrs. Spencer Tunnell). Survivors also include her brother and sister-in-law, Reverend and Mrs. Steve Brown and family, of Columbia, SC, and many cousins, nephews, nieces and a beloved spiritual family. The body was cremated and her family plans a private graveside service. The Tunnell family warmly welcomes friends to a reception from three to five o'clock, Thursday, April 12 at the Members Room at McElreath Hall at the Atlanta History Center, 130 West Paces Ferry Road, N.W., Atlanta, GA 30305. In lieu of flowers the family requests that donations be made to the Lowance Center for Immunology at Emory University.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Apr. 3, 2012
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