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Ethel J. Dobson

March 13, 1940 – November 3, 2022

Wife of Rev. Robert D. Dobson, Ethel J. (Saari) Dobson, age 82, Negaunee resident passed away on Thursday, November 3, 2022, at her home while in the loving care of her family and UP Home Health and Hospice.

Ethel Jean Dobson was born in Ishpeming on March 13, 1940 to Mr. Leonard Saari and Mrs. Impi (Patana) Saari.   She grew up in the National Mine-Palmer area and attended the National Mine School, graduating in 1958.  She attended the Finnish Lutheran Church in National Mine and was confirmed at age 14 at the Palmer Lutheran Church as a member.

At age 15, while attending a high school dance in Ishpeming, above the former Narotzky Motors building, she met Robert Dale Dobson, and they dated for five years, getting married in 1961 as seniors at Northern Michigan University. Ethel taught a year in Gwinn and then she and Bob moved to Ohio where she taught at Buck-Eye Valley and Van Wert School systems while her husband attended the United Methodist Church Seminary for three years.  Earning her own M.S. degree, she then taught in Chassell, Taylor, and Menominee, Michigan, and raised their two boys, Dale and Eric.  She retired in 2000 as the Menominee Title One teacher.

In retirement, Bob and Ethel moved to Negaunee, Michigan where they built a home of their own.  Ethel was active in the United Methodist Women’s Society, in the Northern Michigan Center for Life-long Learning (NCLL), serving on the Board for several years, and was also active on the Negaunee Friends of the Library, and as secretary for the Teal Lake Estates. She enjoyed traveling, with many motorhome trips to Texas, California, Seattle, and Canada, and flying to visit relatives in England, and Finland.  She enjoyed reading, crossword puzzles, visiting, and walking.  Most of all, she enjoyed spending time with her family.

She is survived by her husband, Bob; son Dale and wife Karen, son Eric, and wife Laurie; sister, Shirley (Kallatsa) Kinnunen (Francis), a brother in California, Reynold Saari (Rita); nieces Mary Kallatsa and Susan Wooden, and nephews Glenn, Kenneth, and Dennis Henson, Donald Nyman and Brandon Anderson.  She was preceded in death by her parents, her sister Lorraine Anderson, three nephews, two nieces, and sister-in-law, Nancy Stammer (Clifford).

The Funeral will be at the Bethel Lutheran Church in Ishpeming on Saturday, November 26, with visitation at 10:00 a.m. followed by the worship service at 11:00 by the pastor, Reverend Steve Weston    assisted by Reverend Christopher Hintz of the Negaunee Mitchell United Methodist Campus.  Burial will be at a Columbarium at the Ishpeming Cemetery following the service.  It is noted that the funeral will be on the same Saturday that Bob and Ethel were married on. exactly 61 years before, at the Salisbury United Methodist Church.

Ethel’s obituary may be viewed at bjorkandzhulkie.com where relatives and friends may leave a note of remembrance.

Wife of Rev. Robert D. Dobson, Ethel J. (Saari) Dobson, age 82, Negaunee resident passed away on Thursday, November 3, 2022, at her home while in the loving care of her family and UP Home Health and Hospice.

Ethel’s family will greet relatives and friends from 10:00-11:00 am on Saturday, November 26, 2022, at the Bethel Lutheran Church in Ishpeming where a memorial service will be held at 11:00 am.

A complete obituary with be forthcoming, which can be viewed at bjorkandzhulkie.com

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The Michigan Conference