Doris Ann "Dodie" Thorne
Doris "Dodie" Thorne passed away peacefully on Tuesday, February 26, 2013, at Windsor Court Assisted Living Center in Palm Springs. Dodie left this world knowing that she was truly loved by many and, most importantly, with her family, great friends (Jack, BJ, Louis, and Vince, as well as so many others that were there in spirit), the wonderful staff at Windsor Court and Odyssey Hospice, as well as her favorite caregiver (Anahis) all by her side. Dodie lived a blessed life, filled with achievement, travel across the world, and precious moments. She grew up in the small town of Edmore, North Dakota (near the town of Crary, which had been founded by her maternal grandfather and his brother). When Dodie was eight years old, her parents moved to Los Angeles after the tragic loss of her 16-year-old sister Lorraine to pneumonia. Five years later, Dodie met James "Jim" Henry Thorne, the love of her life, her best friend, and her future husband, at the age of 13. Dodie and Jim attended college together at UCLA. In 1941, after they each graduated from UCLA, Dodie and Jim eloped and were married in Las Vegas. They later re-married in Arizona that same year with their friends and family in attendance. Dodie and Jim had two beautiful daughters, Pamela Ann in 1943 and Sherril Lynn in 1946. The four members of the Thorne family first settled in West Los Angeles, before moving in 1956 to Encino. With the help of his colleagues from the Los Angeles Fire Department, Jim built a beautiful family home in Encino that included an orchard, a pool, and a badminton court. When Jim retired in 1972, Dodie and Jim moved to Palm Springs into their condo at Garden Villas West. They made many close friends and held fabulous parties in their home and by the pool (including a bubble bath "incident" in the hot tub that is still discussed in hushed tones to this day). After moving to Palm Springs, Dodie began refining her tennis skills, playing nearly every day for 30 years. Dodie and her partner, Margaret Jones, formed a legendary doubles team at Mission Hills Country Club, as they defeated almost every younger duo that dared to challenge them. Unfortunately, Dodie had to retire earlier than anticipated from tennis due to a botched knee surgery by a doctor who later absconded. Her love for sports continued, however, as Dodie loved watching football and basketball; of course, she cheered vigorously for UCLA in both sports, often watching her alma mater play on television in her later years with her companion, Roger Coley. Dodie is survived by her daughter Sherril; her granddaughters Bonnie, Shannon and Shawn; and her great-granddaughters Marina, Sofia, Lillian, and Lindsay. She will be deeply missed and never forgotten. Dodie's ashes will be scattered in the desert in accordance with her wishes, where she can watch over her family (and keep tabs on tennis matches at Mission Hills) forever.
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Published in The Desert Sun on May 12, 2013