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Dorothy Lorentzen

1918 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Dorothy Lorentzen Obituary
Lorentzen, Dorothy

Dorothy Camille Smith Lorentzen was born in Dallas, TX on April 12, 1918 to Dean and Camille Grantham Smith. This creatively beautiful force of a woman peacefully passed away in her residence at La Posada in Green Valley, AZ on May 4, 2016.

"Dotty" grew up in Carlsbad at Black River - the ranch country of NM where towering Signal Peak of the Guadalupes rises to the south of "The Ranch" where her family homesteaded in 1884. Her mother, artist Camille's, Signal Peak painting hangs in the family home. Dorothy embraced her childhood there with her siblings: Barbara, Everett and Olivia.

She went to the University of MN in 1936 where she met and later married her husband, Erling Johannes Lorentzen, in 1939. "EJ" was a Naval Officer and dentist. While stationed in CA, the couple had two children, Deana and John. It was in San Diego where Dotty organized a program for children's water safety in backyard pools that honored her with a "Woman of Valor" award. She also studied jewelry making, along with pottery. She thrived on creative freedom and once said, "Working with my hands has always been a source of pleasure. I was probably first attracted to clay and metal because they demand manual dexterity and discipline of the hands. The pleasure of working and creating is a primary factor in my life. I would feel deprived without it."

She and EJ later moved to Carlsbad, then to ABQ in 1965 where she got a BFA from UNM. She remained in ABQ until 2008, when she moved to Green Valley. Dorothy was an award-winning potter, jeweler, and quilter. She belonged to the Carlsbad Area Art Association and the Pecos Valley Artists. In ABQ her work was in 10 Craftsmen, Old Town, the Museum of ABQ and Mariposa Gallery in Nob Hill. Dorothy was also NM's first state diving champ and won the Vogue sewing contest.

Besides the Ranch, her "loves" were her two children; her three granddaughters - Tia, Bree, and Shay; hearing her niece, Susan (Savage) Fishman play the piano in concert; having dinner with her brother "Ev" at La Posada; and her endearing relationship with her sisters, "Baba" and "Oh"; and Olivia "tucking her in" each night with her phone call.

She was preceded in death by her parents, Dean and Camille Smith; her beloved husband of 67 years, EJ; and her sister Barbara Gallagher of ABQ.

Her daughter, Deana, lives at Black River with husband, Ken Guest. Her son, John, lives in ABQ with wife, Lois. Tia and Bree also live in ABQ and Shay resides in Portland, OR. Her brother, Everett Smith, resides in Green Valley and her sister, Olivia Quist lives in Phoenix, AZ with husband, H.L. Quist. Dotty is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews.

This cherished matriarch, "MU", will be sorely missed. A celebration of life memorial will be held June 11th at the private family cemetery in Black River.
Published in Albuquerque Journal on May 15, 2016
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