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Dorothea Hover-Kramer, an accomplished psychotherapist, author, musician, activist and artist, died suddenly of natural causes at age 72 on January 15, 2013, in Sequim.
Dr. Hover-Kramer was born Dorothea Antonie Elsa Adelaide Christine Eitel in Berlin in 1940 and as a German child observed World War II and its immediate aftermath (including the Berlin Airlift) firsthand. Her father was previously a director of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute.
The family came to the United States after the war as part of Operation Paperclip, an American program to assimilate families of German scientists following the war. From Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the family settled in Toledo, Ohio, where her father was a professor at the University of Toledo. He founded a silicate chemistry laboratory later renamed the Wilhelm Eitel Institute.
Dorothea graduated from DeVilbiss High School in Toledo. She then attended the College of Wooster, trained to become a registered nurse at Flower Hospital in Toledo and Boston University, and later received an education doctorate from Nova University.
She married George Hover in 1962, and the pair traveled to Southeast Asia for missionary work from 1968-1973 with their four small children, Mark, Karen, Franz and Anne.
She later lived in Tampa, Florida, and married Dr. Charles Kramer there in 1981. Her 18-year-old son Mark died in the same year.
After Florida, Dorothea and Chuck lived in Poway, California, and Cave Junction, Oregon, before settling in Port Angeles in 2006.
Dr. Hover-Kramer was an active practitioner of energy-oriented therapies for more than 30 years. Her background in both nursing and as a psychotherapist made her a pioneer in developing creative approaches for healing mind, body and spirit.
Her Healing Touch books have sold more than 100,000 copies, and the techniques are used in more than 100 hospitals in the USA and Canada.
She co-founded the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology (ACEP) in 1999. She served as ACEP's second president, was instrumental in implementing its certification program and presented regularly at conferences until recently. Several thousand Healing Touch practitioners are certified through ACEP.
Dorothea was a prolific author in the field of energy psychotherapy, and her titles include Healing Touch (with various subtitles: 1st edition, 1995; 2nd edition, 2001; third edition, 2011); Energetic Approaches to Emotional Healing (with Karilee Halo Shames, 1996); Creative Energies: Integrative Energy Psychotherapy for Self-Expression and Healing (2002); Second Chance at Your Dream: Engaging Your Body's Energy Resources for Optimal Aging, Creativity and Health (2009); and Creating Healing Relationships: Professional Standards for Energy Therapy Practitioners (2011).
Her books and associated instructional materials are regarded widely in the community as both groundbreaking and highly accessible to the practitioner.
Dorothea was also a passionate supporter of organizations for change for many years at the local and national levels. Her enduring commitment to public good began perhaps when she co-founded in 1967 the Winter Hill Nursery School in Somerville, Massachusetts, which operates today as part of the Elizabeth Peabody House Co-op.
Most recently in Washington state, she was a board member of the North Olympic Land Trust and on the Clallam County MoveOn Council. She was also chair of the Dungeness Valley Health & Wellness Clinic's Wellness Committee and a staunch supporter of the arts, specifically the Port Angeles Symphony.
We celebrate Dorothea as a performing classical pianist, visual artist and avid traveler. She was well-known everywhere she lived for organizing and performing with skilled chamber musicians. She came from a family of accomplished musicians, and family gatherings across the U.S. were frequently punctuated by late nights playing with her siblings and nephews.
As an artist, she preferred pastel and acrylic media, with a focus on Western landscapes and the oceans. Many of her works were of professional quality and have been featured in public buildings and at other venues.
Dorothea traveled extensively throughout her life, with repeated trips throughout the Americas and to Europe and Asia. Her last international trip, to the Galapagos Islands in November 2012, fulfilled a lifelong dream.
Dorothea leaves her husband, Chuck Kramer; siblings Luise Peake-Dickerman, Franz Eitel and Elinor Hansen; daughters Karen Hover and Anne Severns; son Franz Hover; and seven grandchildren.
Published in The Peninsula Daily News on Jan. 27, 2013