DONIECE ROSE SHANK
Sept. 3, 1917 - Oct. 2, 2013
Doniece Rose Shank, 96, quietly passed away Wednesday morning October 2, 2013.
Doniece was born September 3, 1917 in Pasadena, California. She attended John Marshall High School, Los Angeles City College and graduated from UCLA in 1938. Her first teaching job out of college brought her to the Imperial Valley where she interviewed and successfully attained her first teaching job at Magnolia School. Doniece lived in the Magnolia School teacher age and became a part of the Magnolia community. She met Robert E. Shank and they were married in August 1940. Doniece quit teaching and became a full time housewife and mother. Following World War II, she and her husband bought land in the Mulberry Community of rural Brawley and she lived there and was very active in that community as a member of the Home Department and as the Mulberry 4-H Club Community Club leader and project leader for many years. She was an expert seamstress and tailor, sharing her expertise with adults and children alike. Doniece was also very active in the Republican Central Committee, walking door to door throughout neighborhoods registering people to vote. Doniece was an occasional substitute teacher and as her children became more self-sufficient she got a job as a social worker for Imperial County. Teaching opportunities became available in Niland and Calipatria and she taught there, developing specialized curricula for special education students. Following her teaching with the Calipatria School District, she began teaching special education at Central Union High School. Doniece went back to school and earned her Master's Degree in Special Education and then taught at Imperial Valley College until her retirement. While teaching at IVC, she also took art classes from Mike Chalais and found that she was immediately drawn to weaving. She took weaving classes in Seattle, Holland, England and from Navajo wavers in Canyon de Chelly. She shared her expertise and in addition to the special education classes that she taught, she began teaching weaving. Always a teacher, she always shared her knowledge, talents and abilities with those who were eager to learn.
Doniece was preceded in death by her husband, Rob Shank.
She is survived by her nieces and nephews; her children, Beverly Shank or Brawley, Joel (Anita) Shank of Brawley and Stephanine Shank of Vermont; grandson, Jonathan Reilly of Reseda, Erin McKown of Oceanside and Shannon McKown Quinn of Portland, Oregon. Celebration of Life will be held Wednesday, October 9, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. at Cheval Farm 346 W. Larsen Rd., Imperial. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be made to Imperial County Historical Society 373 E. Aten Rd., Imperial, CA 92251.
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